Sasha Boyarskaya: I treat running as a favorite healthy habit

Sasha Boyarskaya - runner, Nike ambassador:

I've been running for six years. Six years ago I started a blog to write about how I start to run, because every day I had small amazing discoveries - they happened because I checked everything on myself. And now six years have passed; a lot has changed, and mainly not in me, but in the industry, in the very attitude to running in Russia. If then, six years ago, I could not find even a trivial article about sneakers, now there are hundreds, if not thousands of articles and blogs dedicated to running on the Web. But something still has not changed - I am still not a coach and, like six years ago, I do not consider myself entitled to give advice. However, I am ready to share my personal running experience and explain why it can be useful.

Sasha Boyarskaya: I treat running as a favorite healthy habit

Aleksandra Boyarskaya

Photo: Nike archive

For me, running has become an unexpectedly significant part of life, a wonderful addition to it. Of course, first of all, he is associated with a healthy lifestyle, although the very concept of a healthy lifestyle is not too charming (at least for me), but having started running, I did not become a vegan (okay, for three years I was one, and this is a useful thing, but so far we are not on the way). I didn’t give up sweets, didn’t stop drinking coffee in the morning, didn’t exclude alcohol and didn’t reconsider my lifestyle - just the appearance of running changed my life a little bit, and changed it for the better.

My experience suggests that that jogging can be a very powerful antidepressant, helps you to collect your thoughts and calm down. During the rollercoaster period in my life, it was running that became a kind of stabilizer, made my joy deeper and fuller, and raised my despair to the level of even sadness. Running has made me stronger, and this has affected not only my behavior and mood, but also my work. Now I understand that all these years my relationship with running has been developing, becoming more stable and calmer. It's like with ordinary relationships - first there was love, then several years of ideal development, addiction, crisis, despair, resentment, understanding and, finally, acceptance. At the moment, this is a real strong relationship.

At the very beginning I decided that I would do everything right and started from short distances. I set myself a goal, created a training plan at the NRC (then this application was also called Nike + Running, and the coach was not as perfect as now) and followed the plan. A year later, I got bored with it, and I began to gesture - three marathons and a dozen half marathons in six months, more than 70 kilometers per day without sleep and with a flight to another climatic zone, long races without rest, running in winter every day. It was very exciting and gave its results - the fastest winter half marathon, for example, or the willingness to run 20 secondsWe can take kilometers any day, hour, moment.

However, after a while, I became worry about the psychological aspect (and it is no less important than the physical one) - at one point I stopped understanding why I was running and whether I needed these crazy distances. Then I felt that I had run into a dead end and was really very confused. Of course, later I was able to solve this problem for myself, but for those who are just starting to run and strive to immediately break all records in speed and length of the distance, I advise you to think about why this is necessary. Running is very cool and fun, it motivates, but running as a constant source of endorphins can be harmful.

Through trial and error, I learned to treat running as a favorite healthy habit and finally realized that it is of value to me regular 5-10 kilometers 2-3 times a week is much higher than super-efforts once a month, because it is regularity that gives a cool result. Of course, at the level of physiology, it is more obvious - a figure, muscles, a different quality of the body, when soft places are replaced by elastic ones, but the psychological component cannot be canceled either, and the changes in it have occurred no less positive.

I am not I will open America if I say that even experienced athletes sometimes find it difficult to force themselves to go for a run, but the truth is that just such a deliberate run brings a little more pleasure and, as it seems to me, helps to understand and hear oneself better. When I run alone, I feel very alive, very here and now - I analyze my thoughts, I follow what is happening around. Some would call it meditation, but for me, running has become a kind of exercise to increase awareness, when I hear both the inner voice and the outside world at the same time, and I feel that these are closely related things.

But while I see value in single runs, I enjoy running with other people too - once a week I I run my micro-project for everyone and try to talk on the run with those who are nearby. It seems to me that races in which people who are completely unfamiliar with each other participate are a cool initiative that makes running more attractive to people, turns it into a kind of socialization. Especially noteworthy is the fact that large-scale running events have recently been organized by large companies that arouse trust and interest - for example, very soon, on May 28, a digital charity run will be held organized by Nike and the Naked Heart Children's Fund. Despite the fact that the marathon will be held in Moscow, its main advantage is that you can take part remotely, wherever you are - all you need to do is install the Nike + Run Club mobile app and register at

When I run with a group of people, I automatically become the leader of that group, and I am often asked about the simplest aspects of the running routine. For example, what is more important - warm up or cool down? To this I answer that I personally am in favor of a hitch: running at the pace that I am now adhering to is in itself a warming exercise for the muscles, and a hitch after a run, on warm muscles, is stretching, and very useful (and the most ideal is if there is also a roller to roll out the muscles). They also ask a lot about nutrition: does it make sense to eat before or after?

On the topic of losing weight, I, of course, cannot answer, there are specialists for this, but I myself rarely eat before morning jogging, but I always drink after them coffee and have a pretty hearty breakfast. However, if you feel hungry as soon as you wake up, then it is worth remembering the best friend of runners - a banana. By the way, do not forget about two other important things - water (you need to drink a glass before and several glasses after running) and healthy sleep. Regardless of whether you are running or not, please get more sleep. Sleep changes life for the better. Almost like running.

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