According to an exercise physiologist, running has a 30% difference in calories burned compared to walking the same distance. This difference suggests that the amount of calories your body burns depends on the level of intensity you exert.
The high amount of calories burned is not the only interesting fact about running. Some essential oils from CBDClinicals.com can help relieve muscle pain from running; For as long as humans have used their legs to go places, running has been part of life, and there are so many tidbits about running that you may find interesting.
During marathons, what beverages do runners drink other than water or sports drinks? Was there a runner who completed a race riding a vehicle? Does running have any benefit on your mental health?
This article discusses five fun facts about running that may pique the interest of individuals who want to learn more about this physical activity.
Runners Once Drank Champagne as an Energy Drink
During the 1908 marathon in London, several runners turned to unlikely but familiar sources for that much-needed energy boost: brandy, champagne (bubbly), and strychnine (a type of pesticide).
While you may think such products are dangerous to runners today, popular thought during Victorian times was that alcohol could enhance performance.
This tradition may have dated way back to Ancient Greece and China. Athletes were purported to have taken drugs such as cocaine and heroin as performance enhancers, which would have given today’s anti-doping agencies a headache.
You can trace alcohol use in modern-day sports back to the 19th-century competitive foot races. In those days, events involving long walks covering dozens or hundreds of miles captivated Great Britain, and contending pedestrians were given lots of champagne during the event.
Years later, trainers or assistants, often riding bicycles or cars following the marathoners, would give their runners a boost using alcohol.
The Winner of the 1904 Olympic Marathon Rode in a Car
The 1904 Olympic Games in St. Louis, Missouri, USA, was the first time the international sporting event occurred outside of Europe, and only 12 countries participated.
The dusty tracks and scorching heat during the marathon caused many competitors to pull out of the race. One such runner was Frederick Lorz, who suffered from the conditions and abandoned the race after running nine miles (14.5 kilometers).
Lorz got his coach to drive him by car the rest of the way. However, the car broke down, forcing Lorz to walk back into the stadium.
Upon entering the stadium, the crowd cheered Lorz as the first finisher and crowned him as the winner.
However, race officials found out about his car ride. They disqualified him and gave the win to Thomas Hicks, an American track and field athlete.
Ironically, Hicks used strychnine at that time, which would have disqualified him under modern-day rules.
You Can Run Marathons on Mount Everest or in the Desert
Man’s desire to perform better than yesterday and reach greater heights mean that races are getting more challenging over the years.
Thus, for some racing enthusiasts, running a regular marathon is no longer as impressive or challenging as before. Instead, running an extreme marathon may be the next best thing.
One such race is the Mount Everest Marathon. This annual event starts at Khumbu Icefall near the Everest Base Camp and ends at Namche Bazaar.
Conditions are challenging, mainly due to the altitude. To acclimatize, runners must spend at least three weeks in Nepal before participating in the race.
Another marathon held in extreme conditions is the Marathon Des Sables. This six-day event is a 250-kilometer (156 miles) ultramarathon in the Sahara Desert.
Ultramarathons are longer than the standard 42.195-kilometer (26 miles and 385 yards) marathon.
Organizers call the marathon the toughest footrace on Earth and the ultimate mental challenge like no other. Racers will experience sand, temperatures up to 50° Celsius, and around 1,000 other runners worldwide.
The Oldest Marathon Runner Was 111 Years Old
Fauja Singh is the oldest marathon runner who claimed not to have taken up running until he was 89. Upon turning 90, he ran his first marathon and continued running subsequent races until he reached 100.
Often called the Turbaned Tornado, Fauja’s story inspires perseverance and challenges assumptions about racism, disability, and ageism.
Fauja has run marathons in Toronto, London, and Hong Kong and had a personal best time of five hours and 40 minutes.
He turned 111 in April 2022 and no longer participated in races. Still, his legacy has inspired Sikhs worldwide.
Through a children’s book by author Simran Jeet Singh immortalizing Fauja’s achievements, new generations will remember the Turbaned Tornado’s inspiring life.
Running Can Improve Your Mental Health
When you run, your breathing will become heavy, and your pulse will beat faster as the heart exerts more effort to pump oxygen-rich blood to your brain and muscles.
Once you hit your rhythm, your body releases endorphins. Some runners believe these chemicals cause a runner’s high, a short-lasting euphoric state following intense exercise.
Even after you run, the mental benefits don’t cease immediately. Regular cardiovascular exercise can help produce new blood vessels to nourish the brain. Exercise can also help with neurogenesis or the creation of new brain cells.
These processes can help improve overall brain performance and prevent cognitive decline.
Exercise such as running or jogging also has the following benefits:
- Improved focus and working memory
- Better task-switching capacity
- Elevated mood
Thus, running or jogging can earn you more benefits in addition to physical gains over time.
Consult a fitness expert or physical therapist, and learn other interesting facts about running, including its benefits.
- Can You Burn the Same Amount of Calories Walking vs. Running?
- The Truth Behind ‘Runner’s High’ and Other Mental Benefits of Running