Mindful running…

Running most definitely has its benefits; it is good for our hearts and our heads. I, and many others, have turned running into a habit that is undertaken more than once a week, not only for the exercise but for ability to slip in to another world and switch off.

I find it pretty normal for my mind to wonder whilst running; if someone I knew were to drive past me, I probably wouldn’t notice them. And the thoughts? Well, they can be related to absolutely anything; the run itself, work, life or just how beautiful the day is!

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Why do I find mindful running helpful?

If before I get ready to go out running I am feeling anxious, during my run, I will take the time to think about why I am feeling like that, how I can resolve, is there any reason to actually be feeling that way?

If I’m feeling happy, I will use it to push myself further; quicken the pace, push my legs and lungs and really get the best out of my run.

Either way, I finish the run with endorphin’s that are making me feel more positive.

What do I/ can I focus on to run mindfully?

I often focus on my breathing; making sure I am taking nice deep breaths, rather than shorter, snappy ones.

Once I have focused on that for long enough, and have got in to a rhythm, I will begin to take in my surroundings. Admire the beauty around you and the things that when life is speeding by, you may miss.

Top Tip: If I get stitch, I focus on breathing out every time I stride forward with my right foot. This way, I am no longer focusing on the issue. 

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Try to relax: 

As silly, and as hard, as this may seem, I try to relax when out running. I choose an object of focus, whatever it may be (my stride, bird song, cars, people, trees, my breath) and relax my mental attitude towards exercise. During the week, I push my body really hard when doing HIIT and weight training exercise, that I take this time to just go with the flow and allow my body to enjoy exercise!

How can you do it?

I’d say, follow these four steps:

  1. Focus on your breathing,
  2. Encourage yourself to focus on what is going on around you.
  3. Have a positive attitude towards yourself when you run,
  4. Relax and enjoy it!

Finally, reward yourself after you run! Be it a nice breakfast, a bath, shopping.. make it worthwhile! I love a stack of pancakes!

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I hope this helps!

 

Hannah x

 

 

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