Tag Archives: Mental health

The Writer’s High

18 Jun
Maniac ran so fast that when he passed you, wo...

Maniac ran so fast that when he passed you, wouldn`t even see him run by you. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

Runner’s have this legendary condition known as runner’s high. It is a condition described by some athletes as being the ultimate reward for pushing their bodies to the absolute limit. The feeling of euphoria associated with extreme exercise doesn’t hit everyone and some people don’t feel anything after a 5k but an urge to lurch, fold over in pain and vomit. However, for many a marathon ends with feelings of calm, extreme joy and a sense of peace and well-being normally associated with psychoactive drugs.  The difference many coaches, atheletes and medical professionals say is in how hard an athlete is pushing their bodies and the sustained effort and the effect of runner’s high follows pushing yourself to the physical limit.

Medical professionals had hypothesized that the changes in brain chemistry and surge in induced endorphins. Science is finally catching up to these theories and able to prove and map the changes in brain activity associated with running and extreme exercise. It is no longer a mythical valhalla for only the finest atheletes but an actual measurable change in brain chemistry brought on by pushing your body to it’s perceived limits.

What does any of this have to do with writing?

Remember, the runner’s high doesn’t come from crossing the finish line. It comes with each weary step forward, each breath pulled into a straining lung, and each exhilarating push forward.

Are you looking for the joy in writing to come with a finished work or with each word or page forward?

Let’s discuss the idea in the comments. Is there any comparison between a marathon runner and a novelist?

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