If we have not yet fully grasped the benefits of running, it is likely because we do not recognize it as a primary exercise. Running is neither a competition nor an occasional weight-loss activity. In her new book, Running, the Ultimate Medication, Daniele Vecchioni, Doctor of Motor Sciences, expert in human movement and endurance athlete, and pioneer of the Natural Running method, reminds us that running is the perfect medicine.
Daniele Vecchioni explains what running is, its benefits, and how to use it to live a better life in this book, which has already garnered thousands of web-based fans and runners. What’s the reason? Running can be an effective instrument for change: both a “natural therapy” and “an addictive pill with no contraindications.”
Is running truly compulsive?
Running is beneficial to your health, as demonstrated by the intriguing phenomenon known as “runner’s high.” As Daniele Vecchioni explains, it is a general term for the neurochemical reactions that occur in our body when we run: endorphins (happiness hormones) and endocannabinoids — molecules that bind to the same receptors as the main psychotropic component of cannabis, THC, which make us feel euphoric and energized.
Because of this biological basis, we eventually develop a happy addiction to the pleasure that jogging produces. However, as psychiatrist William Glasser demonstrated in a 1974 research, it takes months to feel addicted to running, but very little to miss it—insomnia, headaches, and stomach problems are highly prevalent among those who abruptly cease jogging.
Why then do we run? You must begin here, “the finish line,” according to Vecchioni, “is also crucial since you must modulate your race and learn to run properly based on it.”
Running for weight loss
There is no greater activity than running for individuals who desire to lose weight. In fact, Daniele Vecchioni argues, “It is the activity that allows you to burn more calories in the same amount of time.” The other equivalent exercise is cross-country skiing, which, in addition to being unnatural, is also impractical throughout the year.
Food is important, but to lose weight, we cannot ignore physical activity, which, in addition to allowing us to consume lighter snacks, has the added benefit of self-regulating: to run better, in short, we learn to eat better, because when we begin, we immediately notice the difference a healthy and balanced diet makes.
To lose weight while running, you must utilize the proper technique: Prior to working on distance or time, Vecchioni recommends focusing on the race’s caliber. Additionally, it is ideal to begin with a half-hour of running and walking three times each week to combine aerobic activity and endurance. This is one of the many concepts covered in the book by Daniele Vecchioni.
Running to combat sleeplessness
If you don’t sleep well, you don’t live well: it’s the fault of hormones that, as a result of disturbed sleep, raise both tension and appetite. Running is also one of the most effective natural cures for insomnia, as Vecchioni constantly reminds us in his book, because it improves serotonin levels, relieves the stress that causes insomnia, and adjusts the sleep cycle by exposing us to natural light.
In this regard, the author cites research showing that after only four weeks of regular exercise, patients with chronic insomnia fall asleep 13 minutes earlier and sleep 18 minutes longer. Vecchioni suggests beginning with a 45- to 60-minute, low-intensity run outdoors in a park, preferably at sunrise or sunset, because the sun’s rays are optimal and help regulate circadian rhythms.
Running improves our creativity
In reality, it is precisely when we are exhausted that we must exert ourselves, put on our tennis shoes, and walk outside, even if we are in the workplace. Not only because it is excellent for our bodies, but also because it is good for our minds: it enhances our creativity and problem-solving skills. “We encounter a new flow of thoughts during the race. We are not out of control; we have a clear brain; nonetheless, we deviate from logic: we think differently, and this generates new thoughts, as Vecchioni explains. Where to begin? Daily growth can be accomplished in as little as 10 minutes.
This is one of the reasons why Daniele Vecchioni, who, among other things, has expertise improving the well-being of employees in a variety of firms, provides good guidance in his book on how to continue correctly and never stop.
Running relieves stress
In addition to serotonin and endocannabinoids, jogging helps anxiety and stress for more empirical reasons. Consider that running compels us to breathe, and often to do it well through the nose and the diaphragm. Running then reactivates the circulation by putting our body’s energy into motion.
And the best part is that we experience all of this while running and also later, since mindfulness teaches us to live in the present. In fact, Daniele Vecchioni asserts that “running is zen,” and he encourages us to try it in order to reconnect with ourselves, our bodies, and our minds. To live it as an opportunity to be alone in order to become a better person around people.
Vecchioni recommends beginning with a light jog in a park, without headphones playing music or other distractions, and at your own pace. What is the justification? He believes, “I’ll be okay later on.” This is the true reason you will never stop running and also the author’s word.
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