The dog days of summer have passed and cooler temperatures are on the horizon, if they haven’t already come to your area. The changing seasons and comfortable weather might encourage you to get outdoors and enjoy some healthy activity before winter rears its ugly head.
Perhaps you’ve thought about taking up running (or getting back into it, if you used to run regularly). However, you may think you don’t have the time (or inclination) to lace up and hit the pavement as frequently or for as long as you’d need to in order to make any measurable impact on your health.
Good news! According to the Mayo Clinic, you don’t need to rack up five miles a day to reap the health benefits of running. In fact, running under six miles per week (with an optimal frequency of just two to three times a week) is enough to make a major positive impact on your well being, including the prevention of numerous ailments and diseases including:
More than one-third of adults in the U.S. are obese. Being obese can increase blood pressure and cholesterol levels, induce diabetes and raise the risk of heart attack or stroke. Even minimal running can help lower BMI and promote weight loss.
More than 29 million people in the U.S. have diabetes and a quarter of them are unaware that they do. Type 2 diabetes is preventable and cardio exercise can help. Studies suggest that vigorous exercise, such as running, has an even greater bearing on preventing the disease.
Physical activity can reduce the risk of many types of cancer. People who run regularly have a significantly reduced risk of kidney cancer as well as a lower mortality rate from breast cancer and brain cancer.
The risk of osteoarthritis and hip replacement is at least 18 percent lower for runners than walkers. A higher amount of running did not lower that risk significantly.
Considering other variables, runners studied had a 39 percent reduction in mortality in general. People who jogged one to three times for a total of 1 to 2.4 hours per week had the lowest mortality rate.
So, what are you waiting for? Get your shoes on and go enjoy a (brief!) run.
[h/t: Elite Daily]