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The Scientific Fact Behind A Runner’s High

Posted March 31st 2019
The Scientific Fact Behind A Runner’s High

If you have been running for quite some time now, then most likely you have heard about this sensation called “runner’s high”. And most likely you want to achieve this feeling to optimize the results of your running exercise.

But do you really know what it’s like having this euphoric feeling? And is there a scientific explanation why you develop such a state every time you run? Get to know more about this interesting topic as you go through this feature article for today.

Definition

In layman’s terms, a “runner’s high” is a term that is used to describe a feeling of psychological well-being that is often associated with long-duration and rhythmic-type physical activities such as marathon running.

Of course, feelings of fatigue and exhaustion may also be expected to manifest as you perform the exercise. But it’s in this collection of positive emotions that enable the runner to push themselves through and able to cover long distances.

While this sensation is often attributed to uplifting feelings, scientific experts can’t still provide a definitive explanation on its effects to the body when the runner is washed up with this feeling.

What’s It Like Having A Runner’s High?

Most runners who have experienced this feeling have various descriptions about how it felt. Hence, making it hard to give a definitive meaning. Some say that they are able to tap into a deep sense of well-being, while others define it as a state of clear-headedness. Still, some other runners insist that it is a powerful burst that motivates you to run further. But what’s common among these descriptions it that it has something to do with an elevated mood, the ability to feel less pain, and reduced anxiety.

Chemical Triggers

Although it’s true that endorphins (happy hormones) are released every time we do exercise, having this kind of sensation can also be caused by endocannabinoids (ECs) and leptin (a type of fat hormone).

To be specific, both levels of endorphins and ECs are elevated during prolonged physical activity. And when endocannabinoids are combined with our happy hormones, it will produce a calming sensation and be more tolerant to pain – types of feelings associated with runner’s high. This result is based on a research paper that is made my certain German scientific institutes in 2015.

On the other hand, the leptin hormone can actually do more than just telling our body that it’s full after eating as it is also found out that low levels of leptin motivate a runner to go further. This is based on another study that is conducted in that same year.

How To Maximize This ‘Feel-Good’ Even More?

Overall, experiencing a runner’s high is what most runners would want to achieve. And though it’s not certain when it will kick in, you will when you’re already experiencing it once you feel more of the pleasant feelings and less of the exhaustion.

And while you’re into it, you can maximize the euphoric feelings by wearing appropriate running gear such as the Copper Compression leg sleeves as it gives you more support and has antibacterial properties to help you be more comfortable and less of the itch as you go and conquer the next mile ahead.