This coach has seen what high schoolers can take away from cross country first-hand.
In addition to obvious reasons like how great running is for your overall health, blah, blah, blah…
You don’t need a helmet.
To be sure, there’s always a risk of tripping over a crack in the sidewalk, crashing into someone or something (like a low-hanging branch…been there, done that), or just spontaneously falling (also been there, done that) but most runners don’t have to worry as much about concussions in the way that people who play contact sports do.
You can participate in the sport at a variety of different levels and still be successful.
Ever looked at the field of runners at a marathon? Every level of runner is there (ok, maybe except for the Olympic Marathon Trials and, well, the Olympic Marathon), but otherwise, all are welcome and many are able to finish what they started.
You don’t really need a bunch of fancy gear.
I mean, I love my Garmin, my Fitbit, and the latest zero-drop shoes stinking up my mudroom, but even if I didn’t have any of it, I’d still be able to run and get a whole lot of joy out of simply moving my body in a runner-ly way. Really, all you need to run is a pair of athletic shoes. Some people don’t even use those. In all honesty, good gear makes a difference. But, FEAR NOT, you can still run without the fancy stuff!
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Many continue to run well into their 70s, 80s and even 90s.
Have you heard about the 92-year-old who runs marathons? What about Gunhild Swanson? Exactly.
It’s a natural, instinctive movement for most of us humans.
Even if we have what is labeled as poor or awkward form, we can still perform the task. Have you read Born to Run? If you haven’t read it, you should!
Running gives back in many ways.
From runner’s high, better sleep, alone time, grown-up play dates, and giving us ways to feel successful apart from the work grind, running pays it forward in many aspects of our lives.
Folks with all types of bodies can run.
I love running for the simple fact that people with bodies like me can do it. People with prosthetics can do it. Almost everyone can partake in some way. It is the perfect inclusive sport.
Running is the best, period.
Some may disagree, but oh well! We’ll have to agree to disagree on this one.