Why NOW is the Best Time to Start Running or Walking
The unprecedented coronavirus (or COVID-19) has left many Americans in a state of shock and fear. We’re facing new levels of anxiety as we try to cope with the new normal. For some, the new normal is juggling challenges never before faced: financial hardship, homeschooling, isolation. Our daily lives, as we knew them, have been interrupted by this time of war, and many of us are wondering what we can do to find that solace and engage in behavior rewarding to our mental health.
This is where exercise comes in. Perhaps one glimmer of hope is the pleasant change in weather conducive to outdoor activities, which many of our trusted health officials have strongly recommended. But with gyms, basketball courts and parks closed, running and fitness walking are great realistic, attainable physical activities that anyone can do right now.
Columbus is full of runners and walkers alike gracing the neighborhoods, bike paths and nature trails. If this is you, keep it up! And if you’re used to integrating such physical activity on a daily basis, please offer your encouragement to those new to the sport. And remember, running or walking can be for anyone of any age, size or background. Nothing is holding you back – not even COVID-19.
If you have recently started running/walking on a daily basis – or thinking about it — good for you! Here are some points to consider:
- You don’t need a lot of gear to get started. Wear appropriate, comfortable clothing and a good pair of running/walking shoes. (Visit local running stores’ websites to browse for new apparel, if needed, and they’ll deliver!)
- Enjoy yourself! Don’t worry about how fast or how far you go. It isn’t about training, just trying. More experienced runners and fitness walkers are notorious for tracking miles, pace, heart rate, etc., but there is no need to go down that road – if you stick with it, there will be plenty of time for that. Soon, you will begin to see and feel the benefits.
- Speaking of feeling the benefits, physical exercise – especially outdoors – is one of the best, easiest, cost-effective ways to feel happy and relaxed. Mental health benefits are known to include stress management, a boost in brainpower, a calmer state of mind, and enhanced productivity.
Is this all starting to sound beneficial? We think so too.
If you still have questions, concerns, or need some encouragement, join the #cbusmarathon community Saturday, April 4 at 7:20 a.m. for a virtual pre-run (or walk) gathering. Chat with Race Director Darris Blackford and fellow Columbus runners before dispersing. Visit our Facebook page to find the link. Whether you’re an avid competitive marathoner, or one lacing up your running shoes for the first time, we look forward to seeing you there!