Life is full of stress. You need to go to work, your kids are sick, and your car just broke down. These are common problems that we get to deal with on a daily basis.
Life throws stress at you no matter which way you turn.
It is up to you to fight it off through proactive engagement in activities that reduce and relieve you of that stress. Running is a terrific way to relieve stress. It gives you the boost you need to start, continue, or end your day in the right way.
Jose Lopez, Head Trainer at Build N Box brings you five ways running can help reduce your stress levels:
Running Clears Your Mind
A good run is perfect for clearing out what is bothering you about your life.
You can step outside or step on the treadmill and everything just fades away into the movement. The sound of your foot hitting the pavement is calming and the repetitiveness of the motion helps your mind calm down. This allows you to zone out into the run.
There is nothing, but you and the movement left.
Getting caught in your own negative thoughts can be debilitating. Running is a good way to engage your prefrontal cortex and your hippocampus. One controls your focus with the repetitive action of running and the other helps your memory and learning capabilities.
The entire experience can even be meditative as you lose yourself in the motion. All these things are good for giving you control over your own emotions.
Additional Information: 5 Tips to Improve Your Focus and Work Capabilities
The Endorphin Rush
Giving yourself a healthy boost of endorphins every day or several times a week is good for mood stabilization and it will just make you feel better. Your brain releases neurotransmitters. These neurotransmitters are endorphins.
Endorphins are a product of the central nervous system. They come into play when you exercise.
Endorphins help your mind relax into the movement as a way of allowing your body to be able to push itself through the activity. This is training your mind and body to accept the benefits of the movement and the ability to be able to improve upon it.
Running Helps Boost Your Self-Esteem
You work hard in life to improve yourself and your family. This gives you a feeling of pleasure for your own accomplishments.
Running is one of the best ways to improve your physical well being and burn calories. Burning calories means losing weight.
When you feel healthy and feel good about your body, you get a self-esteem boost. High self-esteem has been linked to being able to handle your daily challenges in a much better way as you are in a much better emotional state.
Additional Reading: Guide to Self-Esteem Boost
Running Forces You to Breathe Deeply
It’s no secret that taking deep breaths helps calm you down in moments of stress.
Running forces you to do just that.
When you run you have to control your breathing in order to keep a good pace and provide your body with the oxygen needed to continue your movements.
With this controlled breathing, you reduce your heart rate and blood pressure, causing your muscles to relax and stress levels to reduce.
See Also: How to Breathe Better While Exercising
Running Can Help You Deepen Your Social Connections
Running with a friend or coworkers can deepen social connections. It is good having friends at any stage if your life. It is good for your mind, body, and spirit to connect with other humans and enjoy common interests.
This connection along with everything else on this list will give you peace of mind and help you reduce the stress in your life.
Friends are there to help you improve your mood and lift you up when you are down. Add running as your social connector and you will get the stress relief from the endorphins, the controlled breathing, and the clear mind along with a friend to help you keep moving.
If you are able to run at work with your colleagues you can connect with them through a shared passion and improve your work relationships at the same time.
Concluding Thoughts – Running and Stress Relief
Adding running to your life is something that you will not regret. It takes time to build up the stamina and the endurance, but you will not regret what you gain from it. Running is a battle with you.
You win every time you put your running shoes back on.
It is rewarding on so many different levels that the benefits will just keep coming the longer you put one foot in front of the other.