If you’re looking for a way to start moving, running can often be a good start. Without paying for the gym, learning all the movements, and looking for a spotter, running is an activity you can do all alone. You can even use this time for some brainstorming or problem solving. Like any prolonged physical activity, running can benefit your body in many ways.
So, what are the benefits of running?
1. It’s Good for Your Heart
Research shows that running even five to ten minutes a day can reduce the risk of all-cause and cardiovascular mortality, as well as cardiovascular diseases. Compared to non-runners, runners had a 45% lower risk of death and an increased life expectancy by three years.
2. It Strengthens Your Joints
The effect running has on our joints is one of the less known benefits of running. Contrary to popular belief, running may actually be good for our joints. A Berkley study found that running significantly decreases the risk of osteoarthritis. Furthermore, running was associated with lower BMI, while other exercises increased the risk of osteoarthritis and hip replacement.
3. It Improves Your Mood
“Runner’s high” is a popular term used to describe the feeling of euphoria we get during a physical activity. Many runners have reported getting this feeling after a certain distance – the mind and body become highly stimulated, and the body’s senses elevated. Research confirms this phenomenon, linking it to neurons in the brain called endocannabinoids.
4. It Burns Calories
When running a 10-minute mile, an average person can burn as much as 12 calories per minute. Although it may seem that running faster can burn more calories, this is not true. However, running faster enables you to cover more distance in less time, and more distance means more calories burned. Additionally, you might want to run up a hill to burn even more calories.
As you can see, the benefits of running are many. It improves our cardiovascular health, helps us lose weight, and even improves our mood. Start running, for even as little as ten minutes a day, and try to reap some of these benefits.