Do you want to lose a couple of pounds? Adopt some healthy habits? Become stronger and more vital? Then why don’t you consider incorporating running into your daily schedule? This physical activity can benefit you on multiple levels and increase the quality of your life. If you are still not sure whether running is for you, here are a few things you should take into consideration before you write it off.
1. You Can Do It Anywhere, Anytime
Running doesn’t involve a lot of equipment. Actually, all you need are comfortable shoes and maybe a pair of athletic fitness socks and you are good to go. No matter how busy your schedule is or how often you travel due to work, you can always find a way to include running in your day, even for just 10 minutes. This exercise doesn’t require fancy gym machines, and you can do it anywhere.
2. Strengthen Your Joints
Contrary to popular belief, running doesn’t increase the risk of osteoarthritis. In fact, runners are less likely to struggle with this condition than people who walk on a regular basis. When you go for a run, you stress your bones and cartilage causing them to spring back stronger. On the other hand, low-impact exercises like walking or swimming don’t have the same bone-building benefits.
3. Burn Calories
Winter is almost over, and it is time to lose those extra pounds you gained during the holiday season. One of the most effective ways to do that is running. This type of physical activity burns about 12 calories per minute, and that is when you are running on flat terrain. Just imagine how many calories you could torch by running up the hill!
4. Get a Great Leg Workout
Have you always envied those people who have nice, sculpted legs? Well, running can help you rock those jeans or look amazing in your favorite dress. It is an exercise that works your inner and outer thighs, your gluteus maximus, quads, hamstrings, and calves. Instead of trying out a dozen different machines in the gym, go for a run.
5. Work Your Core
Your legs are not the only part of your body that will look incredible because of running. This exercise can work your core and challenge not only your six-pack, but also those deep muscles that are responsible for stabilizing your spine.
6. Increase Your Heart Health
Running and jogging are some of the most popular cardio exercises. Just by running 10 minutes a day, you can significantly reduce your risk of dying from cardiovascular disease. In fact, regular runners are 50% less likely to have a serious heart condition than those who never run. Every time you hit the pavement you decrease your resting heart rate and maintain your heart health.
7. Form of Meditation
If you are feeling overwhelmed or stressed out, going for a run can help you clear your head and feel refreshed and insightful. If you combine running with pre-workout meditation, you could boost your gray matter, improve focus, and fight depression and anxiety.
8. Boost Your Memory
Do you have a problem remembering where you left your keys or what you had for lunch yesterday? If so, it is time to lace up and hit the road because running can improve your long-term as well as short-term memory. Studies show that exercises that get your heart rate up can boost the size of your hippocampus, an area of the brain involved in verbal memory and learning.
Running can benefit you in so many ways, and you don’t even have to become a marathon runner to reap these rewards. Just try to run for 50 minutes a week and soon you will start to notice some positive changes.