Recently a friend of mine challenged a bunch of us to the 365 day challenge. For those of you unaware, this is a challenge started by Zuckerberg (good ole zucky) to run 365 miles in a year. The goal is to get people more active and to live a healthier lifestyle. But this specific challenge irks me. I truly do not think it is for everyone and I think it can do some harm.
- Running is a high impact exercise – It can lead to injuries of the knee, leg, neck, etc…
- Pushing yourself too hard leads to bad form – You fall behind on your schedule so you push yourself harder. Bad form leads to injuries.
- I don’t get a runners high – Maybe 1 / 20 times AFTER running i feel energized.
- I hate running – I currently run 1-3 miles 1-3 times a week and I hate almost every minute of it. If I were to run 365 miles at 6.5 mph, that’s roughly 56 hours of running. Why would I want to spend 56 hours of my year miserable?
- Running so much takes away from other exercises – After I run I am pretty exhausted. I cannot lift as much, play a sport like boxing, or do circuit training.
- Strength training is important – Muscle has countless benefits from burning more calories (than fat) to making it easier to move something heavy in your home. Only running ignores most of your body.
This challenge just seems like setting yourself up for failure. I know some of my points are specific to myself, but they apply to many people. I think a better challenge would be to exercise 365 times. Run, walk, lift, play soccer, whatever it is as long as it is a unit of exercise (probably minimum of 30 minutes). This way you can align your exercises with the body goals you have. Also, allowing different exercises can make the challenge easier for out of shape people to commit to. A person walking and lifting weights 365 times in a year is better than someone running a 10 times and giving up.