Weekly roundup: 18 September 2016

  • The Running Awards 2017: Vote. Adventure Embassy is nominated in the blogs category for the 2017 Running Awards. If you like my blogging I’d be incredibly grateful if you would consider registering (it only takes a second) and voting for this blog.
  • Cody Jay: What Poverty Really Means. Very thoughtful and well-researched post about why it is that, while most of the world has become considerably more prosperous: better fed, better-educated, with better access to medicine, greater leisure time, and so on; the life of the really poor has barely changed at all. Like the author of this piece I have spent quite a bit of time in India (see my article this week about the Kumbh Mela) and it’s startling to think that in many parts of India the lives of the poor, especially the rural poor, has barely changed in centuries.
  • Runners world: Train Delays Runners Hoping to Qualify for Boston. A really unfortunate mess-up in organising this event means that several runners hoping to qualify won’t have been able to. It might not seem like that big of a deal but I know how much preparation and often money I put into a marathon, generally only doing one or at most two in a year, so having it derailed (pun intended) by something like this would be incredibly annoying, Boston qualifying time or not.
  • Outside online: Is search and rescue a public service? An old post that popped up on my Twitter recently and I thought was worth a share. It’s a tricky point whether services like S&R should be free even to people who have acted negligently. On the one hand, anything that discourages people from calling for help is clearly a huge problem. On the other, one can’t help but feel for small counties such as the ones mentioned in the article that have a small tax base but a significant number of visitors who get themselves in trouble. To me the insurance card solution seems like a good compromise though it is somewhat skated over in this article. 
  • PsyPost: Intrinsic reward makes exercise more than just a habit. Interesting that this article popped up on the front page of Reddit jut after I’d posted about how I enjoy running so much that it is more of a struggle not to do it than it is to do it. The article explores the way that making exercise not a chore relies on it a) being inherently enjoyable but b) becoming habitual and cued by something like a morning alarm or the end of work. This very much ties in with my experience: yes, I enjoy running but it has also become totally habitual. In the same way that preparing for bed prompts me to brush my teeth, and I feel physically uncomfortable going to bed without having done so, finishing work or getting up at the weekend makes me want to exercise and I feel uncomfortable and ill-at-ease if I don’t do so. The so what of that is that to succeed at working out consistently you need to make it a habit. 

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