Going the Distance
I have been a runner for at least 13 years. I grew up running track and cross-country, with my mother as the coach. It was so easy to run 6 or 7 miles at practice when I was on a team, but now that I am in college, I get so bored running alone! After only a mile in, I’m looking to run back to my apartment because I notice myself focusing on my burning legs, or my shortness of breath. I think about how nice a hot shower will feel after I’m done. However, running just a mile just doesn’t cut it for me. I feel like I am skimping on my workout. I used to run long distance with no problem and I feel like I am getting weaker from ending my run so shortly after I start. So, I searched my favorite magazine, Runner’s World for a few solutions to my problem.
First off, think of the benefits. Running long distance provides many health advantages to your body. One of which being that it increases the amount of oxygen to your muscles. This is due to an increase in blood capillaries. Also, your mitochondria, which are the energy manufacturers of your body, increase in size and number! You will feel so much more energized! After you eat a carb-rich meal, your muscles will be able to store more of those carbs as glycogen, which will provide you with lasting energy during a long run.
Try running with music! It will focus you on the tunes rather than the soreness in your legs or your labored breathing. I notice that when I run with music, my pace often reflects the beat of the song I am listening to as well.
Running with a friend will make your workout more carefree. It will seem as though you are just hanging out with a good friend instead of exercising to get a workout in. Having a friend with you will also push you to run past your limit.
Join a running group! Once you commit to a group, you will feel obligated to join them on runs. Runners in groups all have their own method of running and you might find someone who runs at the same pace as you.
Check out our UNH campus walking guide to help form a running route. The guide will show you the distance between different buildings on campus!