I was recently at my oldest daughter’s school for an event and near the end of the show the school put on a slide show of activities the kids had been involved in over the school year. What fascinated me most was all the pictures of the young kids, none older than 13, doing track and field. I couldn’t help but be transcended back in time to when running all out was a sheer joy. Can you remember what that was like?
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There was a time when running just for the sake of it was its own reward. The sensation of your heart pumping and blood rushing through your veins caused pure excitement. Your body naturally releases endorphins which give you a natural high. What’s more astonishing is that regular exercise has been shown to produce the same results as mild anti-depressants.
You were meant to run fast over short distances just like kids do. It’s good for you mentally, physically, and heck yes, even emotionally. After all it’s fun. But wait…could I get injured?
You have to admit that young kids are practically made of rubber…I mean they don’t worry about pulling a muscle or tearing a joint. Sometimes the concern over injury is what prevents us from truly enjoying our bodies’ physical capabilities. That is why it is so very important to do some kind of strength training.
Why? Well strong muscles and joints are much, much less likely to get pulled, strained, or torn. An injury most often occurs when we ask a muscle to perform over its capacity. For example you begin to sprint and it doesn’t take too many strides before your hamstring muscles become exhausted and pop, you pull your hammy.
So if you have been inactive for a little while start off slowly. Your workout routine should be made up of both some kind of strength training (body weight exercises or weights) and sprinting.
Make sure your strength routine works each of the muscles in your legs, hips, and core. There is a difference between a workout routine that “works your whole body” and one that “builds every muscle in your body”. You need the latter.
Why? To make sure each muscle is strong so you can run, sprint, jump, and play just like a kid without worry or concern of injury.
So focus on getting strong and fast and you will not only enjoy the fun of physical activity but you will look and feel better than you have in your whole life!
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