Check out the July/August 2019 issue of Canadian Running magazine to read about how different structures of our brains are activated by running and interacting with our external environment in a physical way. This was a fun article to write for this fantastic magazine. Here is a little sneak peak:
If running enhances our ability to attune to the inside and outside world, then it should come as no surprise that it can also help create positive communication networks. David Raichlen and colleagues at the University of Arizona showed that endurance athletes are also able to dampen down the default mode network (DMN) while running. This was also shown to be the case with meditation. The DMN is the internal voice in your head that comes online when we are distracted or our minds are wandering. For some, their internal dialogue can be quite critical. Running, like meditation, provides the opportunity and time to practice flipping the internal script from negative to positive, from cutting to compassionate. We ‘tune in’ to the positive, and ‘tune out’ the negative. Indeed, we can be a lot nicer to ourselves and others after a good sweat session. Marathon and ultramarathon finish lines are the perfect place to see this in action; coming together in support of the human spirit rising above fear and doubt to surpass all expectation.
Canadian Running magazine can be found at your local grocery store, library, or online magazine service.