I’m away from home and my running routine is shot. What used to be a focused, weekly regime of long runs, short runs, hill workouts, and speed play has been reduced to 30 minute jogs and 60 minute runs here and there. It’s only been a week and I can feel the difference. Yesterday was the first time I hit a great runner’s high at about 80 minutes into the run. But other than that, it’s been day after day of mediocre runs and not enough distance. Yesterday, while I felt like a well oiled running machine, I thought about the physiology of the runner’s high. Why is it so amazing and why does it suck so much when we don’t get it.
In my experience, it takes between 70-80 minutes before my body clicks over from “are we really going to keep running?” to “Let’s go!” During long runs that feeling stays with me most of the time even when the miles creep toward 20 and above. Something must happen chemically to explain this motivation. Right?