genius

I have a rule that I won’t run outside if it’s under 30 degrees or if winds are over 20 mph.

But today I had to make an exception. Since I didn’t get to run outside yesterday, I was itching for some fresh air — even if it was striking my smiling face at 22 mph.  🙂

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Despite the winds, it wasn’t so bad! A cool 40 degrees and cloudy-but-at-least-it’s-not-raining skies. Now that the weather report is over, let’s talk about running and look at more pretty morning pictures from the DC area.

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A reader shared this New York Times article with me yesterday and I found it super interesting. It discusses the mental benefits of running, and basically makes an argument that humans’ history of endurance running has directly contributed to our increased brain size and intelligence since the beginning of time. If you’ve read Born to Run or like to geek out about endurance history in general, you’ll recall that it’s believed that our ancestors hunted down animals (food) during really long, slow runs. Better runners got more food, and more food meant they lived longer and were more likely to find a mate. So, natural selection contributed to increasingly more athletic humans… and, the real catch is that brain size grew along increased endurance levels.

To test it out, scientists bred some rats to be endurance runners. The rats that willingly ran the most also developed the highest levels of a substance called BDNF. This substance not only contributes to endurance performance, but also to brain tissue growth.

After those 6 miles this morning, I feel 10x smarter already! Sign me up for Jeopardy and all those other smart-person shows ASAP. I will share my winnings with you all.

Along with my quest to become a genius, I’ve also taken huge leaps in my photography career!

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Anthony got me the best gift ever. I’m now a proud owner of a schnazzy camera that can take good low-light pictures, focus like a champ, and make all my food photos look delicious. Example:

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We made this awesome salmon for Christmas dinner. Paired with cheesy potatoes and broccoli. The fish takes about 10 minutes to prep and 10 minutes to cook! Easiest and most delicious dinner ever.

I’m sad that our 4-day Christmas weekend came to a close, but happy that the weekend is already on the horizon!

  • Do you have any weather/wind rules for running?
  • What kind of camera do you have?
  • Do you feel like you’ve gotten SMARTER since you started running/walking?
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8 comments

    • Amy

      I’d say 30 degrees is my threshold for cold weather running, too, but we’ve been doing a lot of treadmill running even in warmer temperatures this year.

      And those theories make a lot of sense. Even with all of the obesity rates and lack of physical activity, I think athletic people still have the natural selection advantage!

  1. Jealous of your camera! That will be the next “big” thing I ask for (maybe for Christmas next year). I will run outside when it’s below 30 (growing up in the Midwest hardened me), but the wind is the thing I have issues with. If it’s gusty (like snow is drifting and stuff), then I’ll most likely find a treadmill indoors.

  2. I don’t like running in strong wind either. When it’s hard to breathe because the air is being forced out of you by so much external pressure, it’s time to crawl up on to the treadmill.
    Fancy camera !

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