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Have Skin Problems? Try Running! It’ll Save You

Have Skin Problems? Try Running! It’ll Save You

When people think about the benefits of running, things like a more efficient cardiovascular system, increased lung capacity and stronger muscles and bones are often what comes to mind – not to mention a lean, muscled figure. And runners who exercise regularly do often enjoy these kinds of health benefits.

However, it’s not just your heart or lungs or muscles that benefit from regular running. As an added bonus, women especially will be delighted to know that running can also help improve their skin.

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The Skin Will Detoxify Itself More Efficiently

If you run frequently, you probably have noticed a “post-workout glow” to your skin when you get home. There are biological reasons for this. One of the reasons that running benefits in the skin is through increasing and improving circulation. This increased circulation means that more nutrients are delivered to the skin cells as well as higher levels of oxygen. It also means that the skin is able to detoxify itself more efficiently. Better circulation can also increase the rate at which skin cells reproduce and can also help to clear the blockage of pores, which in the long run can also help with conditions like acne.

It’ll Push Out Dirt, Oil And Other Debris Out Of The Pores

Okay, most women don’t like having to sweat even when they’re working out – but the good news is that this sweat is actually great for skin as well. Sweat is able to de-clog pores, pushing out dirt, oil and other debris out of the pores so that the skin is clear and cleansed. Also, when women work out, they tend to drink more water and this hydration is also great for skin health.

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Hormones And Stress Would Be Regulated

Hormones can also be a culprit when it comes to keeping the skin clear and women dealing with the monthly fluctuations of progesterone and estrogen can feel frustrated at breakouts of acne that correlate with the menstruation. Regular exercise, such as running, however, can help to regulate hormones and prevent them from causing skin eruptions. Closely linked to hormonal regulation is the regulation of stress, which can have a negative impact on skin health as well. Many skin conditions are made worse when anxiety and stress levels are not adequately controlled; exercise, however, can release endorphins which provide natural stress relief.

A Few Exceptions to the Rule

There are a few exceptions to the rule of running and skin benefits, however. For those with chronic skin problems such as eczema or psoriasis, the sweat that exercise produces can dry out irritated areas of skin and can cause stinging or discomfort. People with these conditions should talk to their doctor about how to protect their skin during exercise as well as which exercises are most appropriate for a given condition.

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Two Great Running Apps To Try

For people who are wanting to take advantage of all the health benefits of running — including benefits to the skin — running apps are a great way to go. And the good news is that there are a wide variety of apps to choose from, including:

  • RunKeeper. This iOS- or Android-compatible app is attractive because it contains plans designed by top coaches and also allows you to download your information onto social media sites so that you can track against your running buddies.
  • MapMyRun. For runners who have regular routes or want to create new ones, this mapping app is a great tool as it allows you to follow a “breadcrumb” trail onscreen and is perfect for running in a new city or other unfamiliar territory. This app is iOS- or Android-compatible.

In short, running is not just great for your overall health but can give you the gift of beautiful, glowing skin as well. And the apps listed above can help you with your running goals whether you are just beginning or are an experienced and seasoned runner.

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Brian Wu

Health Writer, Author

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Last Updated on January 21, 2020

The Best Way to Create a Vision for the Life You Want

The Best Way to Create a Vision for the Life You Want

Creating a vision for your life might seem like a frivolous, fantastical waste of time, but it’s not: creating a compelling vision of the life you want is actually one of the most effective strategies for achieving the life of your dreams. Perhaps the best way to look at the concept of a life vision is as a compass to help guide you to take the best actions and make the right choices that help propel you toward your best life.

your vision of where or who you want to be is the greatest asset you have

    Why You Need a Vision

    Experts and life success stories support the idea that with a vision in mind, you are more likely to succeed far beyond what you could otherwise achieve without a clear vision. Think of crafting your life vision as mapping a path to your personal and professional dreams. Life satisfaction and personal happiness are within reach. The harsh reality is that if you don’t develop your own vision, you’ll allow other people and circumstances to direct the course of your life.

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    How to Create Your Life Vision

    Don’t expect a clear and well-defined vision overnight—envisioning your life and determining the course you will follow requires time, and reflection. You need to cultivate vision and perspective, and you also need to apply logic and planning for the practical application of your vision. Your best vision blossoms from your dreams, hopes, and aspirations. It will resonate with your values and ideals, and will generate energy and enthusiasm to help strengthen your commitment to explore the possibilities of your life.

    What Do You Want?

    The question sounds deceptively simple, but it’s often the most difficult to answer. Allowing yourself to explore your deepest desires can be very frightening. You may also not think you have the time to consider something as fanciful as what you want out of life, but it’s important to remind yourself that a life of fulfillment does not usually happen by chance, but by design.

    It’s helpful to ask some thought-provoking questions to help you discover the possibilities of what you want out of life. Consider every aspect of your life, personal and professional, tangible and intangible. Contemplate all the important areas, family and friends, career and success, health and quality of life, spiritual connection and personal growth, and don’t forget about fun and enjoyment.

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    Some tips to guide you:

    • Remember to ask why you want certain things
    • Think about what you want, not on what you don’t want.
    • Give yourself permission to dream.
    • Be creative. Consider ideas that you never thought possible.
    • Focus on your wishes, not what others expect of you.

    Some questions to start your exploration:

    • What really matters to you in life? Not what should matter, what does matter.
    • What would you like to have more of in your life?
    • Set aside money for a moment; what do you want in your career?
    • What are your secret passions and dreams?
    • What would bring more joy and happiness into your life?
    • What do you want your relationships to be like?
    • What qualities would you like to develop?
    • What are your values? What issues do you care about?
    • What are your talents? What’s special about you?
    • What would you most like to accomplish?
    • What would legacy would you like to leave behind?

    It may be helpful to write your thoughts down in a journal or creative vision board if you’re the creative type. Add your own questions, and ask others what they want out of life. Relax and make this exercise fun. You may want to set your answers aside for a while and come back to them later to see if any have changed or if you have anything to add.

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    What Would Your Best Life Look Like?

    Describe your ideal life in detail. Allow yourself to dream and imagine, and create a vivid picture. If you can’t visualize a picture, focus on how your best life would feel. If you find it difficult to envision your life 20 or 30 years from now, start with five years—even a few years into the future will give you a place to start. What you see may surprise you. Set aside preconceived notions. This is your chance to dream and fantasize.

    A few prompts to get you started:

    • What will you have accomplished already?
    • How will you feel about yourself?
    • What kind of people are in your life? How do you feel about them?
    • What does your ideal day look like?
    • Where are you? Where do you live? Think specifics, what city, state, or country, type of community, house or an apartment, style and atmosphere.
    • What would you be doing?
    • Are you with another person, a group of people, or are you by yourself?
    • How are you dressed?
    • What’s your state of mind? Happy or sad? Contented or frustrated?
    • What does your physical body look like? How do you feel about that?
    • Does your best life make you smile and make your heart sing? If it doesn’t, dig deeper, dream bigger.

    It’s important to focus on the result, or at least a way-point in your life. Don’t think about the process for getting there yet—that’s the next stepGive yourself permission to revisit this vision every day, even if only for a few minutes. Keep your vision alive and in the front of your mind.

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    Plan Backwards

    It may sound counter-intuitive to plan backwards rather than forwards, but when you’re planning your life from the end result, it’s often more useful to consider the last step and work your way back to the first. This is actually a valuable and practical strategy for making your vision a reality.

    • What’s the last thing that would’ve had to happen to achieve your best life?
    • What’s the most important choice you would’ve had to make?
    • What would you have needed to learn along the way?
    • What important actions would you have had to take?
    • What beliefs would you have needed to change?
    • What habits or behaviors would you have had to cultivate?
    • What type of support would you have had to enlist?
    • How long will it have taken you to realize your best life?
    • What steps or milestones would you have needed to reach along the way?

    Now it’s time to think about your first step, and the next step after that. Ponder the gap between where you are now and where you want to be in the future. It may seem impossible, but it’s quite achievable if you take it step-by-step.

    It’s important to revisit this vision from time to time. Don’t be surprised if your answers to the questions, your technicolor vision, and the resulting plans change. That can actually be a very good thing; as you change in unforeseeable ways, the best life you envision will change as well. For now, it’s important to use the process, create your vision, and take the first step towards making that vision a reality.

    Featured photo credit: Matt Noble via unsplash.com

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