Jenson Mak | Vitality & Healthy Ageing Blog

Dr. Jenson Mak covers the best of living a vital and healthy life at any age.

Tag: running

Jenson Mak Running Habits

3 Running Habits to Break (Or Avoid If You’re Just Starting)

As I continue my journey of discovery in the running world community I have begun to understand how the exercise treats our bodies. Many people are born with the body types to run long distances while many have to work their way to feeling comfortable while running. There have been many lessons that I have already learned about myself during my training and continue to find habits that are often hard to break. Here are some of the more common running habits to break or avoid if you are able.

 

  • Starting Out Harsh
    • Those who are new or returning to running after an injury often test themselves by seeing how far and long they are able to go. This is a common practice and is one that should be avoided at all costs. Having not exercised at an excruciating extend allows your muscles to take a break and relax. If you push your body too hard, you risk a new or reoccurring injury down the line. I highlighted the Couch to 5K app in my last blog. This app can be a great tool for new and injured runners to experiment with in the beginning.

 

 

  • Sleep
    • Getting a full night sleep is one of the most important thing a runner can do for their bodies. Runners who chose to complete their workout at night often find themselves with bursts of energy afterward. This can lead to lack of sleep and staying up later. Your full body is working during a run and giving it the rest it deserves is extremely important. Try running earlier in the day or forcing yourself to unwind through meditation after a late night run.

 

 

  • Form
    • This one often gets forgotten about but the way you run has a major impact on the way your body handles the pressure. First, you should never be looking down at your feet while you run. Keeping your head straight forward helps oxygen properly flow. Additionally swinging your arms in front of you and clenching your fists can make for more work on your body.

 

These three habits are ones that many runners encounter during their time partaking in the exercise. There are many more aspects of running that may be hurting the your body but we can save those for another day. Keep in mind these habits and try to break the next time you hit the road.

Jenson Mak Running Apps

2 of the Best Running Apps for Beginners

If you’ve read some of my more recent blog posts, you’ll have noticed that running has become a huge part of my life. Having transitioned from not being able to finish a few miles to now running half marathons, my eyes have opened to the wonders of exercise. My hope is that through my journey I have inspired someone else to pick up the past time. If you are new to running, there are plenty of tools out there to help guide you towards a successful path. Here are a few of my favorite apps for beginner runners.

 

Couch to 5K

 

This app is great for runners of any level of experience. Even if you are already an avid runner but decide you want to start doing races, Couch to 5k can help. The app helps to gradually build runners up to running long distances. The program is set up so that over a few weeks span you can build up your tolerance and endurance. The prompts on the app will have you run for spans of no more than 2 minutes in the beginning. The intervals of running and walking help to get newcomers, at an activity level that best suits their personal fitness. Since being developed the Couch to 5K app has be adapted into variations for 10K, half, and full marathons.

 

RunGo

 

When first starting out on your running endeavor, you may only be comfortable running one route. For many of us, running the same course can become tedious and boring. Fortunately, the creative minds at RunGo have developed a way for you to find new running courses anywhere you go. With over 40,000 different routes, this app makes running a new adventure each and every time. With voice navigation at each turn, this user-friendly experience has the potential to make every run feel like a new endeavor. As an added bonus you can create your own route and the app will guide you along your desired path.

 

While there are thousands of fitness apps out there, it is important that beginners take the time to understand their fitness goals. Couch to 5K and RunGo are great places for anyone to start. With their unique techniques for making running more enjoyable, anyone can have the ability to prepare for the next local race in their area!

 

Jenson Mak Running

Running is the Best Medicine

You’ve likely heard the phrase that exercise is the best medicine. This statement is beyond true! There are countless benefits for the body and mind that come from getting your heart pumping. I have recently taken up running and the results that I have seen in myself are incredible. From someone who could barely run 1 kilometer to now having completed 3 half marathons I have never felt more in shape and active. For those like me who have limited experience in running there are useful tools such as the Couch to 5K app to help get your new hobby started. Minimal skill is required to take up the activity and it can pose so many benefits to your health.

 

During my running endeavors I have found many ways that running benefits all aspects of my health. Many people experience a feeling of enlightenment or happiness while they are running. As all exercise is, running is a great stress reliever. A number of studies have been conducted on the theory and the results have proved how beneficial even 30 minutes of exercise can be towards your mental health.

 

In addition to mental benefits, the physical benefits of running stretch beyond just getting in shape. Running is one of the few exercises that allows your body to continue burning calories after the activity is complete. The activity is also known to keep us youthful as we age. As someone who didn’t start their running career until later in life I can definitely attest to the fact that running makes us feel younger. Not only are there physical benefits to running as we age, but mentally, the sport reduces the risk of mental decline caused by ageing. Those who have already suffered from serious illnesses such as cancers or stroke have added years onto their lives by running post-recovery.

 

Whether you’ve been an avid runner your whole life or you are just finding your passion for it, know that you are truly helping your mind and body by getting out there. There are so many useful tools to help keep runners on track and help build you up to running any length race you desire. Who knows, maybe you will be beside me for the next half marathon!

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