Running and happiness

I live in village on the beautiful Gower Peninsula, Wales, United Kingdom. This village is called Bishopston and it has been called the fittest village in Wales. I have no idea how that fact was verified, but what I do know is that people here like to run a lot, a lot. They like it so much that they get others, even unlikely ones, to join in!

Just yesterday there must have been 70 or more from this little village out on the beautiful trails around, doing long runs of over 10kms. Apart from running, people cycle, swim, play ball sports, go to the gym, sail and generally seem to be having a great time being active.

Currently, we find ourselves in that unique time of year, sandwiched perfectly between the festive season of Chrismas and New Year and the famous event Darth Mannion Beach and Swamp Run Challenge (DMBSRC). This might have upped the number of trail runners somewhat. But what better way to start off the new year, than to start training for an epic, slightly crazy coastal half marathon in the company of a great bunch of people. Around here, there is a pack to run with and it is a load of laughs!

I like running and I like playing with words. Sometimes the two things are linked, and I have to grab a pen and paper when I get in through the door, before the words and ideas float out of my head again. It is as if the run make them line up the way they are supposed to go. This time I wrote about running and I would like to dedicate this little poem to the local running club, Darth Coastal Runners who introduced me to the dark side of running.

So here goes… Running and happiness

For some of us, including me
it’s a simple equation
running makes me happy.
However, on its own, it’s simply not enough

Running is by itself a tonic
for my body, mind and soul
oxygen flooding
heart pumping
muscles working
endorphins releasing
stress hormones decreasing

I have to take time to strengthen my core
with Yoga, Pilates, Crossfat and more.
As long as I’ve picked one
that suits me just fine
I’ll be running stronger
‘cos the core work’s been done.

All of me can continue to enjoy
this time, this running
when wisdom brings balance and variety
the yin for the yang
for every aspect of mind, soul and body.

So workout is balanced with recovery,
Speechless speedwork with long runs for endurance and chatwork
Strength with flexibility
Alone runs with gregarious
Serious reflection with hilarious

And so together
running becomes the exponentials
of fitness and fun
as we run
the world
a happier place!

Does running give you a feeling of happiness, a sense of wellbeing and achievement? Do you have an inspiring group to run with? If not, maybe you could be the inspiration. A tiny spark can start a great fire!

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