Did you know that the running high is real? And it’s not just for runners!
It is a fact that when we push ourselves physically, our body releases endorphin’s that help with the discomfort and act as sort of a reward for your efforts. I personally have enjoyed this feeling hundreds times and now miss it when I can’t regularly workout.
The key to releasing these endorphin’s is pushing your body to an uncomfortable level. So walking or jogging at a comfortable pace won’t do it. Neither will lifting weights at a slow pace. To trigger this chemical treat, we need to push our aerobic capacity. Here are a few activities that will do it.
Interval training: This is when you push yourself hard, rest, then do it again. Here’s an example.
Go to a track at a school or find a flat path. Run or walk as fast as you can for 1 to 2 minutes, then walk slowly until your breathing is normal and repeat. Do this for 20 to 40 minutes depending on your fitness level. Never push yourself to the point of dizziness or to where you are out of breath for more than 20 seconds or so. This can also be done on a bicycle, stationary bike, treadmill, elliptical or rowing machine.
Hill Workouts: Go to a neighborhood or trail system that is hilly and walk or run at a pace that pushes your cardiovascular limits. Work hard for a 5 to 10 minutes then ease up a bit. This is similar to intervals but the efforts aren’t as intense and the rest periods aren’t as easy.
Circuit Training: This is a great use of time and a great way to get those endorphin’s released. Find 5 to 10 exercises that will work your entire body. One exercise per muscle group. Do light weight or better yet just use your body weight and do 12 to 15 reps of each exercise. Move from exercise to exercise with as little rest as possible. By the time you finish the last exercise you should be physically tired and out of breath. Rest until your breathing is normal and repeat. Work up to doing 4 circuits.
By pushing yourself, you will get fit, feel great and get the added bonus of that “Runners High”. Always consult with your physician before starting a new workout program and ramp up slowly. Starting off too fast can cause injury or just be so uncomfortable that you will view it as a negative, especially if you haven’t done much working out before. Once you’re in a routine for a few weeks, it gets much easier and your will be able to push yourself further and longer.
Get out, move that body and feel those endorphin’s flow!
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TruChoice Fitness & Nutrition
Fitness From The Inside Out