Running and jogging are two popular, yet simple exercises that are preferred by many people. Studies show that about 62% of the people worldwide go running at least once a week. Running is such an exercise where you don’t have to spend a lot of money and you can run according to your comfortable time. If you get to know the benefits of running, it will make you a regular runner for sure.
Running can bring significant improvements both mentally and physically. Some researchers even think that human bodies are shaped in such a way that we can be extremely effective endurance runners. They say that our hips and feet, the length of our legs, our shock-absorbing spinal discs, and our skin all are perfect for us to run long distances. This may be the reason why running is a physical activity that benefits both our body and brain. It is an easily accessible form of cardio exercise too. Running improves aerobic fitness and thus adds to your cardiovascular health.
Let us get into details on some of the benefits of running so that you will know what you are missing if you do not run a mile.
Running helps you to handle stress and everyday challenges. Having stress may lead to different health issues and mood problems. It can even lead to loss of appetite and decreased sleep quality. Running will help you to stop overthinking and keeps you relaxed.
As running immediately reduces the activity in the frontal cortex, you will experience peace of mind from it. Your body exerts excess energy and hormones while running. Running is also helpful in reducing panic attacks and anxiety disorders. It is highly effective in reducing tension headaches
Many studies reveal that running adds extra years to your lifespan. Running can be seen as the most cost-effective pill that increases your lifespan. Studies of 2018 meta-analysis show that runners had a 25 to 30 percent lower rate of all-cause mortality when compared to non-runners. The study also concluded that running at least once a week is more helpful than not running.
A study from the runner-specific paper found that runners get about three years of extra life as running provides benefits like cardiovascular health, good heart health, improved body composition, efficient glucose and insulin control, lower cholesterol, enhanced hormone regulation, and better neurological functioning.
The importance of sleep is a well-known fact for all those who prefer a healthy mind and body, especially for athletes. It is during sleep that the body does all its repair work. It is a very good recovery technique. Many experts suggest that running can make you fall asleep more quickly and improves sleep quality. Thus they will have good improved psychological functioning and have a better focus during the day.
Aerobic activities are the best option for the heart and therefore, running is a wonderful advantage for your cardiovascular health. The plus of running is that it provides many benefits without putting in too much effort.
The more you run, the healthier your heart will be. If you can run for at least 10 minutes a day, you can avoid the risk of heart attacks and other cardiovascular diseases by half. Studies suggest that there are lesser chances for runners to die from heart diseases.
Running can also help lower your resting heart rate or the number of times your heart beats per minute while your body is at rest. Resting heart rate is a vital factor that determines your overall health and fitness. Your heartbeat will be more efficient when you lower the rate.
Running can burn more calories than other physical activities as it involves the movement of your entire body. You do not have to run fast to burn more, you get as much from slow running too. Just that you will have to wait longer to benefit from slow running.
Experts say that running burns roughly 100 calories per mile. If you can keep a pace of 5 mph, a 72 kg weighing person can burn about 606 calories an hour, while a 90 kg weighing person can burn 755 calories in that hour. These people would burn 861 and 1,074 calories, respectively if they can go at 8 mph.
Experts say that regular running reduces the risk of cancer. In the 2016 journal “Original Investigation”, it was mentioned that high-fitness exercises like running have only a lower risk for developing 26 different kinds of cancer.
If you, unfortunately, do develop cancer, running can be very helpful. It lowers side effects from the difficult treatments and also supports you physically and emotionally. Running can also reduce mortality from cancer and also helps you avoid developing another type of cancer.
Running is an impact sport and many people think that it is bad on the joints. But a study comparing 675 marathon runners stated that the arthritis rate of active marathon runners was very low. It was also found that the extreme running burden did not have a negative influence on the knee joint tissues.
In another study which included 44 first-time marathon runners researchers found that there was a sustained improvement on the knees of the novice runners for at least 6 months post-marathon. Their bone marrow and articular cartilage also showed significant improvement.
According to a report of 2020, middle-aged people who are long-term endurance runners had a lesser age-related decline in their lumbar IVDs. When the years of running increased, their disc-spacing looked much better.
The exercise scientist and 58-time marathon runner David Nieman say that modest physical activities improve the immune system. Therefore, moderate running can be very helpful in strengthening your immunity.
Nieman and Laurel M. Wentz said in a 2019 paper that running improves the body’s surveillance against disease, enhances gut microbiota composition, lowers inflammation, improves antibody response, reduces the risk of upper respiratory infections and influenza, and also enhances gut microbiota composition. The report also warns that extreme exercise can temporarily lower your immunity
High blood pressure is one of the major problems that affect our well-being. Moderate physical activities like running are a proven solution to lower blood pressure. Many studies across all populations have proven the positive impact of running on blood pressure. Running gives the same effect as that of some commonly used medications in lowering blood population.
An article in the Journal of the American Society of Hypertension stated that both aerobic and strength training can bring significant reduction in both systolic and diastolic BP. Higher intensity interval training is also ideal for better blood pressure.
As running makes you do something that is physically tough, you develop self-confidence. It will make you proud of yourself. Running is also a very effective tool in boosting self-esteem in kids. The high energy level you get from running increases your confidence as well as your perceived attractiveness.
A study on different recreational activities and their impact after a learning period summarized that running stood top in the findings compared to other physical activities. Running is also ideal for better memorization and information retention. All these add to your confidence.
Running has numerous health benefits. Even short runs can make you feel more energized and focused. Not only for your body, but running is also ideal for your heart health. Tons of scientific studies prove the physical and mental health benefits of a 30-minute run. Exercises like running have the power to change your life for good. It is one of the simplest and cheapest forms of exercise. So what are you waiting for? Just put on your running shoes and start running today itself.