Benefits Of Running
If you haven’t heard already, running is good for you. Our whole lives we’re told how important exercise is, and yet so many people ignore it. As animals, we’re built to move. There aren’t many animals that sit around all day then go to sleep. So, we shouldn’t either. Running is probably the most natural exercise we can do. And, it doesn’t require any special equipment, except for a decent pair of running shoes. Of course, you can go the whole hog and buy running gloves, running jackets, and all sorts of other specialist equipment. But that’s up to you.
For this post, we researched some of the scientific benefits that running can have on your body.
Makes You Happier
We need to include a quick disclaimer here. When you finish your first run after a period of doing no exercise, you’re probably not going to feel happy. Sure, you’ll have a sense of achievement because you actually got out there. But it’s probably going to hurt. You’ll feel completely worn out and your bones and joints will probably ache. Then, the next day it’s going to feel even worse. But, if that first time didn’t put you off, it’s going to get better and better.
When you do a cardiovascular exercise like running, your brain releases endorphins. These are basically feel-good chemicals and they are associated with what a lot of runners call ‘runner’s high’. That’s the feeling you get when you push past the wall of tiredness and feel almost euphoric. Seriously, it’s worth getting past that first run.
Nowadays, we know how dangerous stress can be. People used to think it was just a by-product of working hard, but now we know it’s a killer. So, you need to do everything you can to prevent it. Fortunately, running will do that for you. This is sort of linked to the last benefit because it’s all about the release of endorphins. They boost your mood and stop you from feeling stressed.
Makes Your Skin Look Better
When you think about improving your skin, the first thought is buying some cream. It’s our natural reaction to use products to solve a problem that can actually be fixed with a bit of exercise. Cardiovascular exercise increases the circulation in your body and delivers more oxygen and nutrients to your skin. This helps your skin repair and increases collagen production, so it makes your skin look fuller. On top of that, the enhanced blood flow helps your skin cells regenerate, so you can actually reverse the effects of aging. Yep, that’s right, running will make you look younger. You can use this with anti-aging cream if you really want amazing results.
Helps You Lose Weight
This is the big one. The reason most people start running is to lose weight. We’ve all been there. You’ve spent a few months (or years) living the good life and because of it, you’ve put on a few extra pounds. The good thing is, getting out and going for a run is one of the best ways of shedding fat. Of course, you’ll need to match it with a good diet, because there’s no quick and easy way to lose weight. It’s all about calorie intake. Everyone has a perfect number of calories per day. If you take more than that number, you’ll put on weight. If you take less, you’ll lose it. Running is one of the best ways of burning calories. In fact, if you run for an hour each day, you’ll lose around 800 calories. So put some good tunes on your running earphones and get out there.
Makes Your Joints And Bones Stronger
If you’re just getting into running, you might have heard the haters saying: “running is bad for your knees”. This is actually a common misconception that’s linked to people running with bad form or the wrong type of running shoes. In fact, running actually makes your joints and bones stronger. It boosts the amount of oxygenated blood to your joints, which increase the amount of oxygen and removes the toxins. Plus, it can strengthen the ligaments around the joints, which stops them from hurting. If your joints are hurting when you run, you should ask a professional to look at your form.
Makes You Smarter
Going on a run every day isn’t going to make you a genius, but it will improve your memory and might even reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s and other brain-related diseases. Consistent aerobic exercise has been linked to improving short-term memory function and protecting against age-related mental decline. Plus, every time you go for a run, you have some uninterrupted thinking time.
Helps You Sleep At Night
Millions of people around the world suffer from insomnia. It’s a frustrating problem because a lack of sleep can lead to all sorts of other problems in your life. A lot of people are quick to take sleeping pills as a cure, but they’re actually not very good for your health and the sleep you are getting isn’t very good quality. Regular exercise is a much better way of helping you sleep. It’s been proven that a consistent exercise programme can help insomniacs get to sleep. Think about it this way, if you’re not sleeping, it might be because your body isn’t tired enough.
Reduces The Risk Of Cancer
Cancer is a huge scare for people around the world. Unfortunately, there are many things that can cause cancer, and running isn’t going to cure it. But it’s well-known that regular exercise can prevent many types of cancer. In fact, people that do 6 hours of vigorous exercise a week can reduce the risk of cancer by up to 25%. That’s a significant chunk in anyone’s book. Of course, not everyone can commit to doing 6 hours a week, but every little bit helps.
Reduces Risk Of Heart Disease
Heart disease is another one of those big scares. It’s the biggest cause of sudden death in the US, and a lot of the time it’s down to people not looking after themselves properly. If you eat fatty foods and don’t exercise, your body can get clogged up and your organs stop functioning properly. Running has been linked to boosting good cholesterol levels, increasing the function of your lungs, reducing your blood pressure, and enhancing blood sugar sensitivity. If that sounds too complex, the bottom line is that it makes your body function better.
Makes You Live Longer
We spend our whole lives earning and burning on the daily grind. Whether it’s to support our families or just to enjoy the finer things in life, suddenly you’ve reached retirement and you feeling like you’re running out of time. But if you look after yourself you can actually make that retirement last a lot longer. Regular exercise has been proven to make people live longer, which is probably the most significant benefit of all. You can actually make your time on this earth longer. The only thing is it has to be consistent. You need to get out there on boiling hot days. You need to get out there at the dead of winter. Whatever the weather, you need to make it happen. Fortunately, they make all sorts of winter running gear, rain jackets, and other things to make it a lot easier. So, now you know the benefits, there’s no excuse.
- Top 10 Science-Based Health Benefits Of Running – Runner’s Blueprint
- 6 Science-Backed Ways Running Improves Your Health – Runner’s World
- 8 Key Ways Running Can Transform Your Body And Brain – Business Insider