When we talk of running, we mostly link it to getting into shape or to the Olympics. And, do you know that running can lift your mood, as well as benefit almost every part of your body? Running, among other sporting activities, is regarded as an incredibly effective means of keeping you healthier in a good number of ways. While running may not be everyone's favorite type of exercise, getting to know what it can do to your life, may make you look at running in an entirely different way. Among the many health benefits of running is the ability to get you in shape, fight cancer, increase blood flow to the brain and body, clean your lungs, boost your bones, and stress less.
Thus, if you’re feeling stressed out or bored, just get up, lace up those running shoes, get outside and start spinning. There are many mental health benefits of running you may not be familiar with which has been discuss in this article. It’s for these reasons that most health care providers advise you to make running a part of you If you are still not clear, here are 40+ good reasons to start running now.
1. Lose Weight
Running for most people is synonymous with weight loss. Studies have proven that running is one of the most effective ways to burn excess fat and extra energy (calories) stored in the body. For these reasons it has been repeatedly prescribed by health care professionals to those who wish to lose weight or gain shape.
2. Sharpens your memory
This is one of the mental health benefits of running, sharpening of the memory. Running increases blood circulation to the brain and also stimulate the production of BDNF. This increases the brain’s ability to retain information
3. Decrease Risk of Osteoarthritis
Running doesn't wreck your joints. Osteoarthritis, also known as the most common type of arthritis occurs when the cartilage at the joint starts to break down. This process is triggered by age and body weight.
National Health and Nutrition Examination study revealed that obese people had nearly four times the risk of knee osteoarthritis than normal weight people. Running greatly reduces risk of Osteoarthritis by significantly decreasing or reducing body weight. Hence, runners are less likely to suffer from a degrading knee than members of the sedentary population.
Furthermore, running boasts or increases the strength of your cartilage by flushing out toxins and increasing oxygen flow, and by this strengthens the ligaments around your joints. Running will also give your bones a boost, reducing or preventing the risk of osteoporosis.
4. It’s Easy
Running is a very simple exercise and the present of some high-tech gear help make your running experience more fun. However, all you need to get on the track is a good pair of shoes, and women will also need a supportive sports bra.
The funny thing about it is that everyone knows how to run though the speeds may be different. One may not have the perfect runner’s form yet, but that doesn’t keep you from running.
Actually, there is no new skills to master, no specific equipment to acquire, just get out there and run.
5. Eliminate Depression
Most often, depression arises as a result of clouded mind and hormonal secretion in the brain. Studies have proven that running is one of the best and most rapid ways to eliminate depression. Just after a few minutes after you start running, blood circulation to your brain increases and there is decongestion of the brain. This allows the brain to secrete hormones that naturally improve your mood. Scientist holds running as the most effective cure for depression. Not only that, it’s also the fastest way to treat depression.
6. Improve Your Health
Running is an excellent means to increase your overall level of health. Studies had shown that running can lower or reduce your levels of bad cholesterol while also helping you increase lung function and the level of good cholesterol. This way, it improves your overall immune system and lowers your risk of developing blood clots.
7. Prevent Disease
Running can help to lower your risk for many diseases, including breast cancer in women, stroke and heart failure. Many health care professionals today recommend running for people diagnosed with early stages of high blood pressure, diabetes, and osteoporosis (bone growth problems)
8. Prevent or Reduce Heart Problems (Attack)
One of the reasons to start running, (health benefits of running) is in the function of the heart. Running helps prevent or reduce the risk of having a heart attack. This is achieved by helping the arteries maintain their elasticity properties and strengthening the heart. This significantly reduced your chances of suffering a heart attack.
9. Boost Your Confidence
While some of the benefits of running are mental, others are physical. More still, some are more or less psychological. Running can provide a noticeable boost to your self-esteem and confidence. By setting and achieving goals during the running exercise, you can help give yourself a sense of empowerment that will leave you satisfied and with a much happier feeling.
10. Relieve Stress
Stress is said to cause a number of mood and health problems. Stress may also diminish sleep quality, appetite, and weaken your immune system. As you run, you cause your body to exert or used, excess energy and hormones. This lowers the level of some hormones and makes you and your body feel relief. This also helps in reducing your chances of developing headaches and high blood tension.
11. Keep it interesting.
Running is actually an interesting sport. Not only does it relieve you from thinking, it refreshes your mind and elevates your mood. Running helps to boost metabolism and cardiovascular systems. Studies have shown that people run in a group, have more fun while running and are more likely to keep it up.
12. Live longer
Runners have been proven to have fewer disabilities in life and to remain active longer as compared to their sedentary counterparts, hence runners turn to actually live longer. And while weekly running times decrease with age, the health benefits of running keep on ticking.
13. Overall mental health
Runners are said to be happy people. By running, it keeps one away from unhappy activities. It’s exciting to know you are a part of a race. Like the saying goes, to make one unhappy or to successfully turn a runner’s smile upside down, just canceling a race that they’ve trained months and months for.
14. Strengthens your lungs
Running is an effective way to train your lungs. It increased lung capacity from logging distances after distances. Those strong lungs are difficult to build if you ever find yourself being less a runner or as a spectator of a race.
15. Running is best for the Heart
There is actually no way that we can talk about running without mentioning the health benefits of running to the heart, one of the reasons to start running today. Running just a little as 5 to 10 minutes a day, even at slow speeds is great at drastically reducing the risk of dying from cardiovascular disease. This is a landmark research study recorded in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology. When runners are compared with never-runners, they (runners) are shown to have half the chance of developing a heart disease. Each time you hit the track, you increases the activities of your heart (heart rate is increased), this way, your heart don't need to work as hard as with someone who doesn’t never run.
16. Increases your creativity
In a study conducted and recorded in the British Journal of Sports Medicine, it found that running increased the creative thinking scores of participants. This finding was further supported by evidence between running and higher levels of creativity, by a 2016 article in Business Insider.
17. Helps prevent high blood pressure.
Running helps to work your arteries by making them to expand and contract. This helps to keep your arteries fit, hence, help keeps your blood pressure in a normal range. As you actively run, that flowing in your body is greatly or significantly increases. This helps to circular nutrients needed by the various organs in the body. Hence, your systems work effectively and the risk of most diseases or infection is greatly reduced.
18. Protects the brain from aging
Running has been proven by science to greatly reduce the effects of aging on the brain. In an experiment to determine which was better for the aging brain, brain games or physical exercise? It was found out that, physical exercise (mainly aerobic activities including running) won the day. The brains of people subjected to running and brain game were scanning showing a lower rate of cognitive decline and brain shrinkage in elderly test subjects who were physically active.
19. Alleviates anxiety
Vigorous aerobic exercises including running can greatly reduce anxiety symptoms and help you relax, as recorded by the Anxiety and Depression Association of America. Running has thus been prescribed together with medication to relieve anxiety.
20. Helps you sleep better
These evidenced benefits of running to sleep include heightened daytime alertness, deeper sleep, regulated circadian rhythms, quicker onset of sleep, and the reduction of obstructive sleep apnea and the symptoms in those with insomnia.
21. Boosts self-esteem
One of the reasons you have to start running today is to boost your self-esteem. Findings of a study of adolescent girls who were subjected to run laps between markers and evaluated using a tool called the “Progressive Aerobic Cardiovascular Endurance Run (PACER).” People who run more laps at a faster pace achieved higher PACER scores, and were said to exhibit higher levels of self-esteem, as well as a better physical fitness.
22. Physically strong legs
Runners are known to have powerful legs that help them move faster on them. There also have powerful legs muscles that are able to take them through far distances. They know how to put it into high gear at the track.
23. Increased bone density
Running stresses the bones which enable essential minerals, needed for bone growth to be sent to the bones hence, making the bones grow stronger. However, this does not make the bone unbreakable, and jumping, very high fence is a bad idea.
24. Increased joint stability and strength
Running enhances or increases the strength of your tendons, muscles and ligaments. The joints of runners are able to withstand the more uneven terrain and more mileage. However, this doesn’t mean you will never sprain your ankle while trail running.
25. Running Strengthens the Leg Muscles
The body's biggest muscles are all found in your legs, and running strengthen or benefits all of them. The outer and inner thighs, hamstrings, quads, your gluteus maximus (get ready to turn some heads with your backside), and calves.
26. Running Easily Works the Body
By running, you do not only work your six-pack rectus abdominis. You also work the deeper core muscles, including your erector spinae, transverse abdominis, and obliques, which are responsible for stabilizing your spine, sucking in your gut, and transferring power between your swinging legs and arms.
27. Running Can Always Fit In Your Schedule
Whether you are traveling for work, or don't belong to a gym or you have only 10 minutes to work out, no matter your constraints, you can effectively fit in running into your schedule. This is an extra advantage for busy population, especially women who can't seem to make other workouts or classes fit their lifestyle.
28. Runners Are Awesome
Have you ever wondered why all models are required to fit running as part of their regular or daily activities? This is simply because running helps to keep your body in shape and makes you look smarter.
29. Keep you away from the Doctors
Running is a sure way to keep you away from some diseases. Runners are said to have a stronger immune system and thus, they do not easily attack by most common diseases. This is a great way to save some bucks on your hospital bill.
30. Improves your learning abilities
Research studies have documented several evidence to support the fact that running, both low-impact aerobic running and high-intensity running, in the form of anaerobic sprints, has the ability to improve your capacity to learn and retain new information and vocabulary and as recorded in the Neurobiology of Learning and Memory. These health benefits of learning seemed to be more effective in the case of high-intensity running. Both running types increase the levels of the brain-derived neurotrophic factor (BDNF), protein and the neurotransmitter catecholamine. These are heavily associated with the brain’s cognitive (and learning) functions.
31. Decreases Appetite for unhealthy foods and substances
Research finding seems to be true whether you crave for drugs, alcohol or for junk food. After a few hours of fast running, participants were found to be more likely to opt for healthy dietary choices that involves vegetables and fruit and over junk food. Similar outcomes were recorded when marijuana, and other drugs like cocaine, was the substance of choice. Drug addicts (heavy marijuana users) experienced a marked decrease in both appetite and daily intake of these drugs after just a few sessions of running, according to research work at Vanderbilt University. This finding also holds true that running decreases the craving or appetite for other drugs such as meth, nicotine, alcohol, or cocaine.
32. Helps the brain heal from substance abuse
There is much documented evidence that running helps the brain heal from substance abuse, even when the drug in used is as potent a substance such as meth. Meth is associated with a decrease in the brain’s production capacity for dopamine and serotonin and also destroys their receptors. Running, on the other hand, helps to re-stabilize the function of these two key neurotransmitters, and boosts their production. Hence, the individual is able to regain normalities just after a few hours of running following substance abuse.
33. Make new friends.
Just going out running is a great way to meet and make new friends. If you are trying to make new friends, you can just check out local running groups or websites such as Meetup and you will be amazed by the number of like-minded folks you may get along with.
34. Save some cash
Thinking of saving some few bucks to get some the next iPhone? Just don’t bother. You won’t need to pay any membership fee in a pricey gym or buy fancy equipment. When it comes to running, all that you actually need is the right footwear.
35. Eat more carbs
Looking for an excuse to slurp up more spaghetti? This is your right opportunity. During intense training, you develop an appetite for light foods such as spaghetti. This can help your performance and boost your mood during harder runs.
36. Bring sexy back
Rockin’ runner’s bod may help boost your confidence in bed, however, regular exercise (running in particular) can also help flexibility and get you in the mood more often. Studies about human sexuality and exercise have shown a positive correlation with people who do regular exercise said to have more pleasurable sex life. Women who do regular exercise are said to have a longer sex life and often reach menopause later compared to other women who don’t do any type of exercise.
37. Get a natural glow.
Working up a sweat or running has the ability to rid your pores of the gunk that clogs them and leads to breakouts. A good sweat session may also boost natural skin oils, help blood circulation around the skin, and help keep you fresh and healthy.
38. Treat Body Odor
During running exercise, our body respired and transpired. This rapidly sends out sweat from the body. This process helps to open the pores of the body and allowed bad or accumulated water to drain out. In which case, the body effectively gets rid of bad smell (odor).
39. Running Counts as Meditation
During your running exercise, you may be able to solve many of your difficult problems and provide some strategic answers to some of your questions. Taking a run-break from a stressful project and just do a bit of running around the building (even just a walk around) can help you return the feeling of refreshed and insightful. Studies have proven that meditation can improve focus, fight depression and anxiety, and boost your gray matter.
40. Strengthens immune system
This is no news. One of the most important health benefits of running is a stronger immune system, a system more resistant to invading diseases. Running builds up your resistance to germs which are associated with some minor illnesses. If you’re your immune system more vibrant, however, if the running is intense (such as training for a marathon), then you will frequently get sick. This may just be due to train apply to your system and not necessary due to any infectious diseases.
41. Increase stamina
Regularly running has the ability to improve your stamina, making workouts more productive and enjoyable. And do not forget that lasting longer isn’t all about the track, it’s useful in, other areas as well.
42. Get there faster
Running makes your body smarter and helps you get things faster. Thus, instead of just taking an evening stroll, why not try a jogging around the neighbourhood. It has the advantage to burn more calories, keeping you fit all the time.
Wow! I guess you are so surprised to learn all of the various ways that running can benefit your health. You should be equipped with some of the reasons to start running now. However, the truth of the matter is that this is not a complete list of all the health benefits that running can offer to your body. Running is incredibly beneficial to the mind, body, and spirit. Never leave an opportunity to run slip your hands. The best things to do in the morning is simply to get a few minutes to run around even if it means just running round your house a few times. You will notice that even just after a short run, your body will feel cool, refreshed, more energized, more focused, and you will be better prepared to enjoy all that life has in stock.