12 Health Benefits Of Running You Shouldn’t Ignore!
There are some major health benefits associated with running. We’re going to cover some of the top ones that might convince you to lace up a pair of sneakers and hit the track. If you’re looking for motivation to run again here are 12 health benefits to help you dig in.
One: Good For Your Heart
Running is a great way to improve your cardiovascular health. If you’re worried about your heart, running is one of the best things that you can do. Any form of exercise will help, but running is particularly good for improving your heart.
It is thought that runners have about half the chance of experiencing heart problems compared to non-runners. Running decreases the rate at which your heart beats when you’re at rest. This translates to less stress. This is a great way to improve the health of your heart and minimize your risk of heart-related illnesses.
Two: It Boosts Your Immunity
According to Healthline, running can have a positive impact on your immune system and your ability to fight off diseases and infections. This is contrary to older beliefs, which thought that strenuous exercise might leave you at greater risk of illnesses.
This applies to both short-term illnesses and long-term ones. Running may help you fight off the common cold. Also, running can make you more resistant to diabetes, neurological problems, and other diseases.
That isn’t to say you should go running if you’re feeling really ill. Overall, running increases your fitness and makes you more resistant to diseases. This translates into your body being more primed to fight them off when they occur.
If you’re feeling down, the last thing you might want to do is go for a jog, but it has been proven over and over again that running is a great way to improve your mood. The endorphins released by the exercise can lift your mood and make you feel a lot better about yourself.
This is coupled with things like an improved sense of yourself; if you regularly make the time to run, you are looking after your body, and you are likely to lose a bit of weight. Both of these things make you more likely to feel good about who you are, and can lift your overall mood even when you aren’t out running.
Related: Why do people run?
Four: Weight Loss
Losing weight is a major reason for people to take up running, and on average, a runner can burn up to 1,000 calories in an hour. That’s a great way to take off a few pounds, and running is considered a very effective form of exercise for this reason.
Many runners will burn around 100 calories per mile, so it may take a little time to build up to the point where you can burn off significant amounts of weight, but running is still a very effective weight loss technique.
Related: Is It Ok To Run If I’m Overweight?
Five: Improved Sleep
WebMD also tells us that running regularly can help us to sleep better, as long as we avoid running too late at night. Running relieves stress and pain, taking away two major factors that interfere with sleep.
Tiring your body out is also a good way to increase your chances of sleeping well, and running can be very tiring. It is a good idea to run early in the day, in the afternoon, or right after work to prevent the adrenaline and endorphins from keeping you awake, however. Don’t exercise just before bed, or you’ll feel too invigorated to sleep!
Six: Reduced Risk Of Osteoporosis
If you suffer from or are at risk of osteoporosis, running is one of the biggest favors you can do for yourself. Because running has an impact on the bones and puts a bit of (useful) stress on joints and muscles, it encourages them to strengthen themselves.
Osteoporosis is a dangerous condition where your weak bones can lead to major injuries and other issues – so if you’re worried about this, it is definitely worth taking up jogging. Just a few quick runs around the block a couple of times a week can make a big difference to the strength of your bones.
Seven: Improved Metabolism
Who wouldn’t want to improve their metabolism and enjoy the associated benefits of being able to eat more without gaining more weight? As well as helping you to burn calories, running is thought to improve your metabolism, according to MensHealth.
This is because the endurance aspect increases the production of FGF21, which is a hormone that controls cravings and can help reduce your craving for sweet foods and snacks. Again, in terms of losing weight, running will help you out.
Eight: Strengthened Core
We always think of running as improving the leg muscles and lower body, understandably. However, that isn’t all that it’s good for! If you are interested in boosting your core strength and improving your balance, running is an ideal form of exercise.
Related: Can Running Give You Abs?
Running helps to target many of the core muscles, including the abdomen, the obliques, and the transverse abdominis. These muscles play a major role in stabilizing your body, moving your spine, and most major movements made with the torso.
Strengthening your core is important for all kinds of exercise, so running is a good “all-rounder” that will increase your fitness as a whole, not just in your legs.
Related: Best Core Exercises For Runners!
Running gives you space to think, and many runners find that this form of exercise helps them to solve problems and deal with issues that they are trying to work through. It allows your mind the freedom to grapple with problems in an uninterrupted space, while the body is busy doing something else.
Ten: Less Arthritis
Many studies have now found that running is associated with lower rates of arthritis. Running keeps your joints strong and active and can reduce your chances of getting – or lessen the impact of – arthritis.
This is contrary to the old belief that running increases your risk of joint problems. It has been consistently proven that moderate amounts of exercise can reduce the chances of suffering from arthritis.
Eleven: Improved Insulin Regulation
Running drops your blood sugar levels quickly because the muscles begin to use the sugar as soon as they start working out. This kind of exercise can help to regulate your blood sugar and your insulin levels (although it is not a substitute for medical treatment if you are diabetic).
Twelve: Increased Productivity
It might feel like taking a break to run will reduce the number of other things that you can do in a day. Actually, it has been proven that running can increase your productivity and make you much more efficient.
This may be because it gives you a break from the task which in turn increases your focus. After your focus is increased, your mind can go into problem-solving mode. It may also be because it boosts your mood. Finally, whatever the reason, a run can help you to work more efficiently and more effectively – so consider lacing up your sneakers before you start your workday.
Overall, therefore, running has many health benefits, and if you are thinking of taking it up, any of these might be enough to convince you to do so. Don’t discount the mental benefits; running can help your mind as well as your body and will make you feel both healthier and happier.
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