Tempted to ditch your even­ing run? Our ex­pert en­ergy and mo­ti­va­tion tips prom­ise to de­liver a sec­ond wind

Runner's World (UK) - - Front Page -

Do… yoga ‘A sim­pli­fied sun salu­ta­tion in­creases blood flow to the brain,’ says yoga teacher Annie May Rice (an­niemayrice. com). In­hale deeply, lift your arms out and up to the sky. Ex­hale and fold down, bend­ing your knees and hang­ing your head. Re­peat 3-5 times.

Hear… a puls­ing tune The ‘prim­ing’ ef­fect of mu­sic can in­crease mo­ti­va­tion, says Dr Costas Kara­georghis, au­thor of Ap­ply­ing Mu­sic in Ex­er­cise and Sport (Hu­man Ki­net­ics). ‘Gen­er­ally, fast, loud mu­sic stim­u­lates, so it can be used in a psy­che-up rou­tine.’

Drink… cof­fee It’ll rouse you from the late-af­ter­noon fug and make your run home feel eas­ier. A re­cent study1 found that as lit­tle as 60mg of caf­feine (equiv­a­lent to a sin­gle es­presso) boosted alert­ness.

Watch… sport­ing suc­cess Inspirational run­ning clips (try Mo Farah’s Rio 5000m) ac­ti­vate ‘mir­ror’ neu­rons in the brain, driv­ing you to em­u­late what you see – run­ning with pas­sion and fo­cus.

Eat… cho­co­late Dark cho­co­late con­tains the fla­vanol epi­cat­e­chin, which boosts blood flow to key ar­eas of the brain and pro­tects against ox­ida­tive stress, and the com­pound theo­bromine lifts the mood and acts as a mild stim­u­lant.

See… the light One study2 found that 30 min­utes of in­door ex­po­sure to nat­u­ral bright light at lunchtime re­duced af­ter­noon sleepi­ness. Or try the tablet-sized, desk­friendly TL30 Bright­light (£60, john­lewis.com).

Wear… red kit What we wear af­fects our men­tal state, says the the­ory of ‘en­clothed cog­ni­tion’. Stud­ies show that putting on some­thing red has an ‘ac­ti­vat­ing’ ef­fect, in­creas­ing the heart rate and adren­a­line lev­els.

WAKEY-WAKEY Don’t wind down: there’s run­ning to be done

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