About five years ago I got serious about running and started working my way up from running around the block – to a 5k – to even further distances. The process took a couple years, and I never got very fast, but I loved it, and I still do.
As I met more and more runners, I got great advice. One of my informal coaches was Jeff Coney, a marathon runner who’s fast enough to qualify for the Boston Marathon – no small accomplishment. Occasionally I would email Jeff with questions or to chat. One day I emailed “I ran 8 miles this morning, coach.”
And I was surprised at Jeff’s reply. He emailed: “and you are the better man for it. You are going to make some extremely good decisions today as a result of your 8 mile run.” I read that and wondered what he meant about decisions. Well it turned out I did make some good decisions that day, and I noticed my game (business, family, everything) got better.
Now there’s more proof, just reported in the New York Times:
Aerobic exercise causes a steep spike in blood movement to the brain, an action that some researchers have speculated might be necessary for the creation of new brain cells, or neurogenesis. Running and other forms of aerobic exercise have been shown, in mice and men, to lead to neurogenesis in these portions of the brain associated with memory and thinking, providing another compelling reason to get out at lunchtime and run.
So my friends my advice to you is this: rise up from your PCs and Macs, your laptops and lattes at Starbucks, rise up and stretch! Walk around the block, yea, verily, run around the block! You will inspire yourself and become ever more creative.