Runners High

Techniques for getting that “Runners High”

One of my favorite things about exercising is a short-term euphoric release of endorphins, commonly referred to as “Runner’s High”. Over the years, I have figured out how to get a nice release of endorphins almost every time I work out…particularly if I follow my standard prescription.

What is Runner’s High? In Wikipedia, it is defined as: “Continuous exercise can produce short-term euphoria, an affective state associated with feelings of profound contentment, elation, and well-being, which is colloquially known as a “runner’s high” in distance running”.   A runner’s high is caused by the release of endorphins in the brain.

What it feels like: When I get the runners high, it feels like a rush running down my body. It is kind of like when a chill runs down your body, but in a way that puts a smile on your face and feel happy. I have never done drugs, so I can’t compare to artificial drugs. However, a natural release of endorphins is perfectly healthy high.

Tips for Runners High: I typically get an endorphin release by doing a semi-intense cardio workout such as treadmill, elliptical machine or running. I get a good rhythm going where it is somewhat intense but not too intense. I also listen to a good song, which is a great trigger for me.  My favorites are the “Bittersweet Symphony” by The Verve and “Sky Full of Stars” by Coldplay.

It also helps to take a few deep breaths through the nose. Even though, you will be breathing heavy from the exercise, taking a few deep breaths into the nose really helps trigger the endorphin release

Whether you regularly get an endorphin release or not, exercise is a great way to feel better in the short term and long-term. The endorphin release is just icing on the cake.

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