Around 4.5 million years ago, Australopithecus – an early ancestor of humans started walking upright, and then approximately 2.6 million years ago, we developed the skills for running. During those days, a fundamental reason for running was that you had to hunt to eat, and if you were a slow runner, you would go hungry, and if another tiger, lurking in the bushes, was hungry, you might become his meal. In the absence of insurance schemes, we developed our tools to survive in the deadly forests. Scientists claim that one of the essential inventions in human physiognomy is running. There were significant changes in our bodies’ physiological structure, making it easier for us to run. Those traits included:
- Decoupled shoulders allowed the human body to rotate while aiming straight.
- Skull feature to regulate overheating.
- A taller body with a narrower pelvis and trunk slender along with the waist.
- More significant buttock muscle to stabilize the body while running.
The earliest record of humans participating in the running games is the Tailteann Games, held in Ireland in 600 BCE. The first Olympic games were born after that in 776 BCE. The popularity of the Olympic games grew in8 BCE, attracting participants from 12 cities and, after a century, from 100 cities. Earlier, only short runs used to take place in the Olympics, ranging between 160 to 190 m. In the Olympics, Greeks did not celebrate the sport, but it was a festival for the Greeks, and hundreds of animals were sacrificed on the day for lord Zeus. After a while, a long-distance run was added to the games called Dolichos. In 720 BC, according to a famous adage during the Battle of Marathon, Pheidippides ran 25 miles to inform the kings of their victory. He suddenly died after telling the news. This eventually led to the origin of the Marathon.
The Modern Craze
Arthur Lydiard was an Olympic coach of New Zealand when he founded the Auckland Jogger Club. The club was trendy in the country, and it was his dream to spread the technique of jogging in Canada. After a while, Bill Bowerman, a University of Oregon track coach, visited Lydiard and jogged with him and brought the culture to the U.S and also published a hugely sensational book called “Jogging” in 1967, which kicked off the whole running craze. Even on the international forum, there are various ways of running events being organized. 100m, 200m, 400m, 800m, 1500m, 3000m, etc. Though there are hundreds of games in the Olympics, running has a respective fanbase altogether, and arguably Usain Bolt is one of the most famous sports figures of all time.
Now the time is such that we don’t run to evade an attack from a lion or kill a deer. We do that to click a picture of our slim belly and post it on social media.
How To Run
- Get your spears ready – What I mean is that you should have a good pair of running shoes and a pair of earphones if you like listening to music.
- Ensure your hydration – Drink if you are thirsty and don’t overdo it because, many times, overhydration is more dangerous than dehydration.
- People claim that on toes running is better on toes or feet, but there is no substantial difference if you are comfortable with using your feet, happy running.
- Run, walk, run – Run for 5 minutes and then walk for10 minutes and then repeat.
- Don’t over-run – You might be excited to see the 10000 calories written on your smartwatch, but in the initial days, I advise you to take it slow so that your muscles get enough time to adapt to the excruciating efforts of running.
- Stretching – Before and after running, it is better to get into some embarrassing position to stretch your body muscles and loosen them to don’t get a jerk when you run.
- Choosing a route – Choose a route that is less busy and full of nature. The cleaner the course, the better. It helps you breathe clean air and run a little longer without any disturbances.
- Tilting – While you run, lean your body forward and then run. It helps you with less air resistance, and so you use fewer resources to run more distances.
As you start slow, for a comparatively lesser distance than a pro, you would struggle with asphyxiation while pushing the limit. You would often feel as if you are going to collapse, and it would feel as if your legs have given up, and then your heart has given up, and then your will. At that moment, what you need would be a running partner who is ready to stagger along with you—a runner who doesn’t easily give up. So you run for another 5 minutes. The same process would start again. The whole chain of giving up. What do you do now? The previous words would fall on deaf ears of your brain. Yet you would realize that last time you were almost dead, and you made it, now it’s the same thing. So you run. You take one more step, and then one more, and then one more. You give up the idea of completion of the whole track. The most significant role you play here is to take the next step. And then another. That’s it. You can also choose the timing. Do you like it in the evening or the morning?
One misconception you should get yourself rid of: Miles is more important than minutes. You have to be a horse rather than a cheetah. Miles shows patience, grit, stamina, and strength. We see the same difference between an amateur boxing match of 12 rounds and an Olympic match of 3 rounds. Good luck, runners. As they say on the internet, “I like to run early in the morning before my brain figures out what sort of things I am up to.“