This year, I've doing a lot more running to stay active during a time when there is not as much else going on. I fought through some bad tendonitis when I first started running again in April, likely due to overuse when I started going too far too quickly. I could barely walk for 2 weeks, but besides that getting back into running has been a very positive experience for me. Running has its physical benefits as well as the emotional / mental benefits, both which have been important to me.
For me, the physical benefits of running are obvious and easily felt. When I am running frequently (2 to 3 times per week), I feel better when I'm at rest - my heart seems (and does) beat more slowly, and I rarely too full or bloated. I am usually always hungry and can eat what I want without much thought to it, which is great. There is also the obvious upside of running in that it is the best calorie burning activity you can do, and it helps you to burn fat and keep you looking good. I sleep better when I'm in better cardiovascular health, and overall just feel better about my overall heath and well-being.
The emotional and mental benefits of running are even more pronounced and important to me, by my estimation. Running is a great way to get out of the hustle and bustle of work and everyday life and go engage with the the outdoors. When I'm running, I like to listen to a podcast, music, or sometimes just clear my mind and think about nothing. It's very relaxing. However, the best part of the run comes right after the run when the runner's high kicks in and I can start to breathe easy. Oh man, that is the best feeling in the world hand's down. When the runner's high kicks in, I feel so proud of the miles and effort I just put in, without fail. It's in these moments, walking around right after a run, when I do my best thinking - my mind is so clear, and positive, that it feels like any problems or stress that I was dealing with before, have all but faded away. And that's why I have come back to running time and time again - it's just so good for you and that runner's high is intoxicating.