Running is an excellent form of exercise that can burn more than 400 calories per hour. If you’ve never been running, I recommend that you put on shorts and a tank top, grab your sneakers and take a nice jog around the block. While you may not love the actual running part (and who knows – maybe you will) there are tons of excellent health benefits that are convincing enough to make anyone want to start running.
1. It helps prevent diseases…lots of them.
Running even five to ten minutes a day is associated with a drastically reduced risk of dying from cardiovascular disease according to a study in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology. And this isn’t the only disease running can prevent. Studies have shown that it lowers your chance of different types of cancer, prevents strokes, heart disease and even diabetes.
2. It can seriously clear your mind.
Studies have shown that running can even eliminate depression. When you start running, your brain naturally secretes hormones that improve your mood. If you’re stressed from a long day at work, go for a run; I can almost guarantee you’ll feel much better afterwards.
3. And can make you feel accomplished.
When you finish your first 5k, it will probably feel like you’re going to have a heart attack, but boy will you feel on top of the world. When you start running, it gradually improves your confidence over time, as you start accomplishing your distance, or speed goals.
4. It can help you lose (or maintain) weight.
If you want to lose weight, or maintain a healthy weight, running is definitely for you! Like I said, burning nearly 400 calories an hour, running is great exercise. This doesn’t mean you have to start running an hour every single day, but even just incorporating a 30 minute run a few times a week – you’ll definitely notice a difference in your weight (and your overall health)!
5. Running saves money. I swear!
Hear me out: Instead of buying a fancy gym membership, all you need to do is put on your sneakers and run around your neighborhood. Don’t let bad weather fool you either; running in the rain and snow can actually be kind of fun (and refreshing). Plus, if you start running in lieu of taking a car to run errands, you’ll actually save a few dollars on gas money.
6. Runners sleep better at night.
Think about it. If you went on a five mile run earlier, you’re going to be tired enough that when you crawl into bed, you’re going to be half asleep. AKA lights out as soon as your head hits the pillow.
7. It can tack on years to your life.
People who run tend to live three years longer than people that don’t…three WHOLE years!
8. It can expand your social circle.
That’s right – did you ever consider that running could actually give you more friends? There are so many different types of running groups and meetups that you can join as a runner, a great way to ease your way into the running scene with all that extra support.
9. It makes your bones stronger.
Move over milk, running makes bones stronger! While this might not be of much concern to you right now, think about long term. Yes, I’m talking about when you’re old and wrinkly – you want to make sure you can do everything you can NOW to ensure you’re not too fragile and weak years down the line.
10. Running is fun!
At first it may be difficult and annoying, but when you start running, you will have fun; it’s science! Running releases happy hormones…what’s better than that?