Image Credit: Lindsay Garbacik for The Campus Trainer
As the weather cools down, runners everywhere are getting excited to pump up the mileage and get out in the fresh fall air. Running, jogging and walking are some of the best activities during the pandemic because all of them can be done individually and outside.
According to Runner's World magazine, you should try to run on less crowded routes or on routes where you can safely maintain a 6-foot distance from others. However, if you choose not to wear a mask while running, you should always bring a mask with you in case of any unforeseen issues, like a bathroom break or stopping for food or drink.
With or without a mask, running offers many health benefits. According to Business Insider, running can help reduce stress, improve heart health and even improve focus.
Junior kinesiology major Jack Reimer says that running makes him feel genuinely happy.
“Running never fails to put me in a good mood, and I consider it a crucial part of not only my physical health but also my mental health,” Reimer said.
One feeling of happiness most runners encounter is known as runner’s high. Junior biology major Alexa Tarzy describes it as “a feeling of numbness you experience,” where “your mental state changes from thinking about all the hard work you are putting in, to satisfaction.”
Dr. Matthew Sedgley has been a physician since 2000, and is the director of running medicine for MedStar Health, which has locations in Maryland, D.C. and Virginia.
“The science behind the runner’s high is thought to be a release of dopamine,” Sedgley said. “Runners will often describe feeling very happy as they exercise,” which also explains how the chemicals released help relieve stress.
No matter how you find time to exercise during the pandemic, make sure you’re doing it safely and within your limits.