Running is one of the oldest sports in the history of man. The ancient Greeks raced in the early Olympics and it is thought that competitive running existed long before even those events. Running requires virtually no equipment and everyone can do it. All you need to get started is a pair of shoes and a path to run on, and even the path isn’t always necessary.

If you ask ten different runners why they run, you are likely to get ten different answers. So I decided to list the top ten reasons people should run:

1. You can run anywhere, at any time and in just about any weather
2. It’s free
3. Running for only 20 minutes can burn between 200 and 400 calories
4. It is a great way to get into shape and to stay in shape
5. It is one of the most efficient ways of burning calories and preserving muscle mass
6. When at rest, regular runners burn more calories than non-runners
7. Running outdoors in the fresh air reinvigorates the mind as well as the body
8. It will increase your physical and mental well being; this is because as you run, your heart is pumping blood more efficiently around your body and your brain
9. Running reduces blood pressure, helps control body fat, can lower the risk of certain cancers and is excellent for maintaining bone density and lowering the risk of osteoporosis later in life
10. Running can be a great social activity

One of the great things about running is that anyone can do it. You don’t have to be a world-class, stick-thin marathon runner to get started. In fact, those professional runners had to get started somewhere, too. You get to go as fast or as slow as you would like. You choose how far you run. You pick your route. Running is something that you can do as a group or individually. The sport is incredibly diverse and flexible.

The best way to get started, if you haven’t already, is to start running today. Set up some goals (remember to set SMART goals) and get to it! A goal chart might look something like this:

Each person’s goals will be different, but you get the idea. The point is, set a goal for yourself and then map out a plan to get there. You will feel better about yourself, you will be healthier, you will live longer and you will be in better shape. All because you decided to lace up a pair of shoes and get outside to run.

Until next week,

Coach Michael

Today’s Fun Fact: Onions actually have no flavor, only a smell. The next time you eat one, plug your nose and see if you can still taste it.

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