Runner’s high is a body’s natural adjustment for releasing necessary chemicals so that one does not get tired and keeps running for long durations. This is the simplest definition I could give. For the running geek, please go into all the technicalities and neuro- biological effects on the body here.
To simplify, runners high is the brief moment of time, where your body stops huffing and puffing and your body starts to enjoy the process of the run. It seems almost mythical, yes, its like a zen like state, akin to meditating while running. This could be the highest form of self- actualization while running .I am of the view that the elite runners of the world have a longer “zen moment a.k.a. runners high” than regular mortals like me.
I can say that, I had the moment for a very brief moment, maybe 20 to 30 seconds on my last 10 k. I wish this time span gets longer. But, I am of the view that the more one practices, the more one gets a chance to land up in the runners high phenomena.
If you take a look at the picture I have posted, one can see that apart from the smile on her face, she seems to be very relaxed ( partly because it a smaller run in a scenic river in Portugal). But the moot point here is that, once the body switches into the “runners high mode” , the body starts to release enough chemicals to keep the pain causing reactions to minimal state. The body stabilizes the palpitations of the run and streamlines the oxygen carrying capacity to all parts of the body.
For newbies, including me, this would something like getting an imaginative “olympic gold medal in running”. For the keen runner in you, I would ask you to take some time out in looking at the kenyan and ethiopian runner marathon videos on youtube. My personal favorite is Eliud Kipchoge of Kenya, the ” God of Marathon Running”. In this video, you can see people are trying to mimic his speed.
But as my cricketing idol MSD goes, “Don’t worry about the results, enjoy the process”. I would suggest the same sporting philosophy here. Just start with small runs, take breaks whenever you want to take. Take a days break. Do running on alternate days. Take it slow and gradual. The most important part in any fitness or sporting activity is persistence and regularity.
I would like to thank my senior colleague Mr Gopinath Narayan, who is an ardent runner and fitness enthusiast himself for triggering this topic.
I shall subsequently post on running injuries,diet,nutrition out of my own experience in my subsequent posts.
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