Shanghai Running Magazine Volume 3 - Page 23

Chasing the “High” By Lisa M. Mulvey feel the exhaustion, the strain, and the psychological distress. You are free. Chemicals in the brain, such as endorphins, are released during periods of high intensity exercise. The release corresponds with the time when muscles are exhausted of stored energy. As endorphins and other “feelgood” hormones flood in, pain is suppressed causing a euphoric feeling. The ever-elusive runner’s “high”. Utter euphoria with a devilish twist – unpredictability. Science has proven its existence, but like the Giant Squid, it remains enigmatic. Endorphins, yes please. Suddenly, out of nowhere it hits. A shot of adrenaline suddenly exploding throughout your fatigued body, you feel a slight out-of-body experience. Surreally, your legs and feet feel light as a feather but incredulously maintaining a constant speed. Your heart floods with bliss as you savor the next few minutes of the bizarre effortless run. You are flying. No longer do you Enigmatic timing. Then, in crushing disappointment, it dissipates. You feel the crash in every atom of your body. The jarring pound of each step on the earth returns, leg muscles begin to groan and the mind returns to bickering with various parts of your body. 20 minutes, 20 miles, or for some, 20 years. The elusive “high”, is just that – elusive. A set pattern of happenstance has yet to be scientifically established. © Shanghai Running 2014 Blissful, but fleeting moments. Your heart remains filled with glee, appreciative of the chance to have touched that “high”. Exultingly, it works harder as a result. The thrill of the chase resumes. The concentration of “feel-good” hormones released during the “high” is based on individual brain chemistry. For most runners, a “high” lasts about 15 minutes or a few miles. For some, after completely exhausting stored energy in the legs, a “high” can be prolonged until high-intensity exercise stops and possibly, for several minutes afterwards. Euphoria awaits. Since science has proven that it’s only a matter of time, let the chase begin,.. 23