If you’re on the fence about taking up running, I’ve got 25 amazing benefits of running that I just know will convince you to take up the sport. Whether you want to get a bit fitter, lose a bit of weight or it’s something you’ve always thought about doing, here are some of the best benefits you’ll reap that you may not have even considered!
- It’s cheap
Compared to gym classes and memberships, running is cheap in comparison. All you need are a well fitting pair of running shoes, comfortable running clothes and you’re all set to pound those pavements!
- You can run anywhere, any time
There’s no waiting for gyms to open, you can run any time of the day or night, whenever is most convenient for you. This means you can fit it around busy schedules and plan into your day accordingly.
- Running can be a social activity
While the majority of people take up running solo, running can actually be a sociable sport. Most towns have running clubs that anyone can join from beginners to more experienced runners and you can take yourself along to any parkrun for free where there’s a whole community of runners.
- Great for weight loss
Running is a great calorie burner at an average of 100 calories per mile of running. In comparison to swimming which burns around 400 calories per hour.
- A stress reliever
Running has been a proven stress reliever and may help anxiety and depression.
- It’s a confidence booster
To quote Elle Woods ‘exercise gives you endorphins, endorphins make you happy’ which in turn will boost your confidence. Who doesn’t want to be happier!
- Increases your cardiovascular fitness
Running is great for increasing the fitness of your heart and blood vessels.
- Strengthens your joints
It’s a myth that running weakens your joints so don’t let that put you off starting to run.
- You already know how to do it!
There’s no training, no courses or classes you need to attend, you can literally put on running shoes and start unsupervised. We’ve been running since we could walk upright, it’s a natural action for your body.
- Helps mental agility
Running improves your memory by boosting the blood flow directly to your brain and helps stop age related mental decline.
- Adds years to your life
While you’re strengthening your joints, boosting your memory and improving your cardiovascular fitness, you’re adding years to your life and practically owning the secret to a long life.
- Less likely to develop cancer
Studies have suggested that running may make you less likely to develop cancer.
- Hear hear!
Running may actually help you hear better by increasing the blood flow to your ears
- You can eat more
My favourite benefit, you can eat more! This doesn’t mean that you can eat whatever you want but it does mean your appetite may increase so as long as you’re eating sensibly, you can eat much more.
- Lowers blood pressure
Which reduces your risk of heart disease
- Power up
People who are runners will tell you that if you’re feeling tired, you should go for a run. Running will give you an energy boost which I know you won’t believe but trust me, it really works.
Your four legged friend is going to like this one a lot because they’ll get to spend more time with you and have fun at the same time. If you have a dog that loves to run you can make it an enjoyable experience for the both of you. If you find that you both love it, there are Canicross races across the country that you can run with your dog.
- Improves your posture
Your natural running stance automatically engages and strengthens your core muscles which in turn will improve your posture. If you sit at a desk job you’ll feel the benefits and stop yourself slouching for 8 hours a day.
- Better sleep
Exercise in general will help you sleep better so if you’ve been struggling to get your 8 hours a night you will very likely find that you’re able to have a more restful sleep.
- You can pump up the tunes
One reason I love running is that I can listen to my favourite mood boosting and motivational tunes and get a great workout in because I’m feeling so much more pumped.
- Gets you outside
Being outside in nature is what it’s all about and you can explore new places, run in new cities, woodlands and countries. The possibilities of races you can run are almost endless.
- Runners high is real
While many people are still debating whether runners high does in fact exist, others swear by it and claim that that’s what keeps them going back out and running time and time again.
- You might inspire others
Very often spectators of races feel inspired to take up running themselves by seeing you achieve your running goals. If someone sees you excelling at running after taking it up from scratch, other people make look to you for inspirational real-life goals.
- Free transport
While you may not like the idea of running 10 miles to get to work, you can incorporate running into your commute whether that’s going to the shops, visiting a friend or if you live a reasonable distance from your office, run to and from home a few times a week and you’ll not only get fit but save money too.
- Improves circulation
Running will stimulate your circulation which will help to give you clearer skin by flushing out waste products from your body. Lovely. But you’ll have dewy glowing skin so you’re winning.
I hope you enjoyed some of these running benefits and heck, I hope that some of them have inspired you to put those running shoes on and start running.