Everyone from new runners to long distance veterans love the half marathon, and here are 9 reasons why!
1. No battle for space.
Gyms, fitness classes, and even swimming pools can be crowded and noisy. Getting outside for a long run is never cluttered. You don’t need to queue for your training run. In fact, the great outdoors is all yours (OK, you might need to share the path with a bit of wildlife once in a while!)
2. Mental stimulation.
Running longer distances outside in nature is linked with emotional wellbeing, higher IQ, and more robust mental health. For a generation experiencing rising amounts of anxiety and stress, this is a bonus side effect we should all be grateful for!
3. No qualifications needed.
Anybody can train for a half marathon. No special skills or prior experience needed. Just lace up your running shoes and head out for your first half marathon training run.
4. Start where you are.
And you can start with the shortest run – it all counts as half marathon training! Everyone has to start somewhere. If that’s one mile at run/walk pace, then that’s your start point. Set yourself a half marathon goal, and build up to the race distance in your own time. Little and often will soon build up to something amazing.
5. Enjoy the views.
In the gym, you get a limited view from the treadmill: the TV, the wall, maybe the back of the person in front of you. That all changes as soon as you start long runs outside. Every stride of every run will be different. See your town from a different viewpoint. Zone in on tiny details that you usually miss. See the seasons changing in front of your eyes. Connect with walkers, dog owners, and hikers. What will you discover?
6. Runners high.
The idea of a “runners high” – the happy buzz you get from running – is not a myth! When you run, your brain releases happy hormones including endorphins. These give you a buzz, and leave you feeling powerful and happy. The knock on effect can make you feel stronger and more positive in other areas of life, too.
7. Inspire others.
Once you set the goal of running a half marathon, yo’ll be inspiring people around you. Friends, colleagues, parents, even your kids will all be impressed by your efforts. You’ll be a healthy role model, a positive influence, and a great role model for hard work and dedication.
8. Meet new friends.
As adults, it’s difficult to make new friends. Running a half marathon gives you the opportunity to make brand new friends online, in your local area, or even in a running club. You’ll have something in common, but you’re likely to come from different backgrounds too. So running will help you expand your social circle and life experiences.
9. See how much progress you make.
It’s never been easier to track all your progress – miles run, distance covered, calories burned, weight lost, and speed increased! Training for something challenging like a half marathon is so rewarding, especially when you can see your progress in numbers. So get started, and record the journey