In defense of jogging…
There have been many an article about the ills of jogging and I thought I would write a little counter-point. Curious to know other’s thoughts! Granted, jogging has it’s down-sides. I do agree that if someone is fat, it is a bad idea to cut calories to 1,400 a day and get out there and start running. I also realize this is what many people do, not knowing any better. For those, I think these articles have merit.
However, some of the points in these articles have not been my experience (and I stress MY experience).
Jogging makes you fat… No it doesn’t. This is silly. Can it make you fat? Sure. The leanest points in my life have been when I’ve consistently added jogging into my training plan.
Jogging turns men into women (I understand the author was being a bit tongue in cheek)…. The argument is that elite powerlifters and weightlifters rarely jog, and they are manly. So don’t jog if you want to be manly. There isn’t really any reference to lower T levels from jogging, and that may be the case. But I would assume if jogging is incorporated into a training plan that includes lifting, any impacts would be off-set. Deadlifting double your body weight seems like it would remind your balls what to do.
The more you jog, the more you have to jog to improve…. Isn’t this the idea of progressive overload? It’s no different from weight lifting. I don’t want to get any better at jogging really, but maintaining where I am at has had positive impacts for me (more on that later).
Running wrecks you knees…. Sure, it can. Just like bench-pressing can wreck your shoulders. However, if done properly and gradually over time, the risks can be mitigated. Granted, some may be pre-dispositioned to knee problems, but I haven’t had any issues with my knees and I have been jogging pretty consistently for 5 or so years (ages 35-40).
HITT is the only way to go… HITT does have a very positive affect when I incorporated it into my training. It doesn’t really seem to improve my endurance though the way jogging does. Also, I think there is as much risk jumping into HIT training as there is with jogging if not done properly.
Running makes you feel like shit…. I seem to be at my best physically and emotionally when I jog. It helps with stress levels, it’s 45-60 minutes where I can be left alone with nothing but my thoughts. I often get a runners high around the 45 minute mark (especially when running fasted – I know, gasp). My labs prove my body is positively impacted (good HbA1c levels, good cholesterol levels, etc).
Other positive impacts I have noted when I jog…
My endurance is night and day better. Just like being strong has had it’s practical advantages for me, having endurance has been the same. My lifting is improved and I don’t get winded as easily, I can walk up many, many flights of stairs and not start sweating and panting like a bastard, I can beat my teenager in races (critical ).
In addition, from a defense standpoint - fight of flight – sometimes you just gotta run. Moreover, though a lover, not a fighter, if a fight breaks out and is not over quickly, endurance and cardio are your friend if it goes to the ground.
I can pretty much eat whatever I want when I jog consistently. Obviously I have a couple options here – don’t eat the fucking cookie and avoid having to jog. I like cookies.
Just some thoughts… flame away.