Joggers’ lanes


Just like the saying ‘morning shows the day’, the way you spend your morning time hugely impacts how your day is going to be. Every individual has his/her own morning routine but it isn’t necessary that it is right. What is important is to start your day on a healthy note.

Jogging is one of the best habits one can inculcate in one’s morning routine. Jogging is very beneficial if you go for it in the evening, but the best time is the morning. The fresh and cool morning air does wonders to your mental and physical health. Jogging benefits everyone — be it those who want to stay fit or those on a weight loss mission.

Fitness instructor at Hardic Fitness Centre, Sachit Pradhan also endorses this. “The best time for jogging is in the morning, after sunrise, say around 6:00 am.”

Meanwhile Raju Diwakar, fitness instructor at Club Oasis, Hyatt Regency, pointed out that five to seven in the morning or after five in the evening are the preferable hours for jogging.

Waking up early morning isn’t everyone’s cup of tea, so, many might toss the idea citing it impossible. However, all one has to do is to develop it as a habit and just put in a little effort for the sake of one’s health. They say that it takes 21 days to develop a habit, so do not find any excuses to skip your morning run for at least 21 days. After that you can take a day off on Saturday and enjoy a morning nap. Both Pradhan and Diwakar pointed out that one can jog on alternate days as well.

The big question that now arises is how can you develop this healthy habit. For starters, you

can set your alarm 10-20 minutes earlier so that you have ample time and have no excuses to skip. Also keep your workout clothes ready the night before so that you don’t dilly-dally finding clothes.

Telling someone about your plan can also keep you motivated. After all you don’t want to be embarrassed and say that you didn’t stick to your plan when your friend asks about your jogging session.

Way to go

Burning excess fat, building stamina, staying fit — jogging can be done for many purposes. The way you jog is determined by your purpose. But you should start your jogging plan in a certain way.

First and foremost, you need to consult your doctor to know if you are fit for jogging for there are certain health issues that might not be compatible to such activities.

According to Diwakar, one should begin by jogging for five minutes and should keep tab on their hear rate so that they don’t over exhaust themselves. He added, “They should control their speed and focus on how they are taking their steps.”

Pradhan said beginners could start with a slow walk and gradually increase their speed. He said that for those who jog for fitness, 25-30 minutes of jogging, including a 5-minute walk is enough, but for weight loss, one needs around 45 minutes of jogging.

But one should remember that slow and steady is the way to go. You can gradually increase the time, distance and speed as your capacity and stamina grows.

Jogging can either be done as a sole workout regime or can be coupled with other forms. Both Diwakar and Pradhan recommend stretching afterwards. In case of those who are into sports, jogging can be the base or warm up.

Things to keep in mind

Diwakar suggests a light breakfast before heading out as it gives you the necessary power for the physical activities. “But there should be a gap of at least 10-15 minutes,” he added.

Water intake is another thing that one should take into consideration while jogging, so that one doesn’t get dehydrated.

Besides this, comfortable clothing that includes a pair of light shoes with flexible sole, loose clothing fit for the weather and comfortable socks is vital.

Wholesome benefits

Jogging is one of the best forms of cardiovascular workouts and also helps in strengthening and toning the muscles. In addition to this, jogging has also been credited for psychological benefits like relaxation and anxiety reduction. Other benefits are —

• It speeds up the digestive system and can help relieve digestive problems.

• In addition to increasing metabolism, jogging effectively burns more calories, which helps you lose weight.

• If you suffer from poor appetite, jogging will improve your appetite.

• Jogging helps reduce stubborn belly fat.

• Running does not produce bulky muscles like weight training or even circuit training, but it does increase leg strength.

• Jogging makes you sleep better.

The psychological benefits are —

• A major benefit of jogging is stress relief. It either gives you the time to think about your problems or to escape for some time. Distance runs are often great for solving problems that are nagging you.

• Speed runs are great for tearing through aggression and anger as you focus all that emotion into a few sprints you will feel much better afterwards.

• It counteracts depression. Running creates the release of endorphins that can cause a general sense of happiness.

Although there are so many benefits of jogging, there has been a few apprehensions among people about the damage to joints like knees, ankle or hips. But all it takes is a correct and sensible approach to get the wholesome goodness of jogging keeping aside the possible risks.

Where to jog

“Soil exerts less pressure on the knee while running, so it is better to opt for outdoor places for jogging,” said Pradhan, who himself prefers jogging in the Bhainsepati area. With the increase in houses and pollution, finding a proper place to jog in Kathmandu isn’t easy. Here are few places one can try out —

• Durbar Squares: Patan, Kathmandu and Bhaktapur

• The Park and the field at Pahsupatinath premises

• University premises at Kirtipur

• Tundikhel, Ratnapark