News - 17th July 2018

All you need to know about ‘runner’s high’

Intersport_runner's high

It’s the end of July and here at Intersport we’re feeling pretty good right now after some glorious summer running over recent weeks.


Sometimes the best part of running is not the running itself, but the way you feel both during and afterwards. As a parkrunner, chances are you’ll have experienced ‘runner’s high’ at some point – but what is it exactly, and what causes it?


Five must-know facts about runner’s high!


Fact #1: Runner’s high is real


It’s not just you – runner’s high really is a thing. But what exactly is it? The Oxford Dictionary defines it as “a feeling of wellbeing or euphoria resulting from physical exercise, especially running”. After a long run, typical daily stress melts away and we feel happier, more optimistic – even elated. The psychological benefits are so great, it’s what motivates many people to keep on training – or to run long distances and marathons.


Fact #2: It’s not caused by endorphins


Neuroscientists have long thought brain chemicals called endorphins caused runner’s high. However, more recent research has shown that endocannabinoids (neurotransmitters which have a similar effect on our bodies as cannabis) are mostly responsible instead.


Fact #3: We can thank our early ancestors


There’s also an evolutionary theory behind it. Our ancestors often had to walk or run for hours to find food or to escape predators. So, nature built in a reward – feelings of euphoria and less sensitivity to pain – to encourage this behaviour (and help our species survive).


Fact #4: Run longer to get it


Although you might well experience runner’s high at parkrun (we have to admit it’s hard not to feel good at parkrun!), more often than not it’s the longer distances that induce runner’s high. Although it varies from person to person, experts suggest running for at least an hour or two to ensure you get that tired-but-exhilarated feeling.


Fact #5: Over-train and you’ll miss it


You also need to get the intensity just right because if you push too hard, the process fails. Aim to run at a moderate intensity, mostly as a steady pace but with a few sprints mixed in throughout. Your best bet: go for a long run that challenges – but doesn’t overwhelm you – to get those feel-good chemicals released. Enjoy!


Remember we’re always on hand at Intersport with plenty of friendly advice, from tips about running through to gait analysis and finding your perfect shoe. Find your nearest store here


Don’t forget that you can claim 10% off at Intersport as part of our ongoing parkrun partnership price #PPP*. Simply show your parkrun barcode (#DFYB!) to claim 10% off running products in store!


Remember to follow us on Twitter @IntersportIE and like us on Facebook.


See you at your next parkrun!


*PPP valid at all participating Intersport stores; see our website for details. Not to be used in conjunction with any other offer or promotion.

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