Hey you. You runner you. I’m super proud of you for getting out for a jog. I think it’s great you’re exercising your body. I bet you feel better about yourself right now. As well you should. It’s great to run. Running is fun. In fact, they should call it funning.
Not really because that’s a dumb word. But you get the point.
Now listen. I want you to listen very carefully when I tell you this next bit of advice. Are you listening? Ok. Good.
Here it is: Stop jogging in place on the corner while you wait to cross the street.
Did you read that? I hope so. I made it bold so you can really see it better.
Don’t do it. It’s a waste of your energy. By waiting a short amount of time for the light or traffic to yield you the right of way, you’re not going to lose any momentum from your run. By jumping up in down in place, you not only waste energy that could be better spent concentrating on a better running for but you also look real silly. And it’s not the kind of looking silly that might actually serve a purpose. It’s the kind of looking silly that doesn’t serve one.
You’re not burning significantly more calories. You’re heart rate is not going to plummet so much in the short period of time you’ve stopped running to lose any of the benefits running allows it. If anything, it’d be better for your heart to change up the pacing of your run so you can challenge it to get even stronger.
I have a personal policy that when I see someone out for a run, I say a quiet, “Good for them” to myself. I like to pump people up. I’ve been the beneficiary of strangers giving encouragement, so I want to do that for others.
But when I see a running hopping up and down on a street corner waiting for a light to change, I can’t bring myself to encourage it. It makes me sad.
So stop making me sad. Stop hopping in place and pretending you’re continuing the jog just vertically. You’re not. You look like a silly amateur. Take the time to breathe deeply, catch your breath, maybe stretch a little, and enjoy the sights and sounds of the run you might otherwise be missing as you’re on the go.