Running is synonymous with health and fitness. Whether you get your miles in on the treadmill or around your favorite park, what benefits does running have?
Here are a few:
Propelling yourself forward is what makes running possible, and that requires some serious leg power. Your leg muscles are the primary muscles that move you, and the more you use them, the stronger they get.
Whether you call it aerobic exercise or cardio, running increases your heart rate and breathing rate for a sustained amount of time. And regular cardio sessions help keep your heart strong and healthy. A 2014 study found that runners had a 45% lower risk of cardiovascular disease.
The term “runner’s high” refers to the feeling runners experience thanks to the endorphins that are released. Endorphins trigger a positive feeling in your body, which can help reduce stress and anxiety, and also make you smile.
Smiling isn’t just a side effect—it can improve your performance. Smiling during your run can lower your perceived effort. Wondering how to improve run time? In addition to following a training schedule, try smiling a few times to improve your performance right away.
Switch up your exercise routine with these workout ideas:
- Shape Up and Smile: 3 Workout Alternatives You Haven’t Tried Yet
- 3 Island Workouts to Keep You Fit Year-Round