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benefits of runningYou probably know that running is a great way to get into shape, but did you also know that it can benefit almost every part of your body?  And did you know running can also affect your mood? As an exercise, running is very effective at improving your overall health.  It may not be everyone’s favorite exercise, but knowing what running can do for your life may adjust your running paradigm.

 

Health

Running is a great way to improve your overall health.  Research shows that running can increase your levels of good cholesterol.  It also helps you increase lung function and efficiency.  Running has also been shown to boost your immune system and decrease your risk of developing blood clots.

Confidence

For a Chubby Runner, the benefits of running include a boost to your confidence and self-esteem.   When I first started running and training for a marathon, I felt a noticeable change in my overall self esteem.  I had a clearer mind, stronger muscles and stamina, and was setting and accomplishing goals.  The process of setting and achieving goals, can help give yourself a greater sense of empowerment and accomplishment that will leave you feeling much much happier.




Disease Prevention

Running can help decrease the risk of having a stroke. Many doctors recommend running to their patients who are in the early stages of diabetes, have high blood pressure, and osteoporosis.  For women, it can actually help lower your risk of breast cancer.  Running helps the arteries retain their elasticity and strengthening the heart, thus lowering your chances of suffering a heart attack.  Running has been proven to help reduce the risk of heart attack.

Weight Loss

For weight loss, running is one of the top exercises for both losing and maintaining a consistent weight. For calorie burn, you will find that it is a leading way to burn excess calories. Combined with a healthy diet, running can help you shed those extra pounds and keep it off.

Depression

Disclaimer: I know that depression is a real mental illness that effects millions of people.  I am not suggesting in any way that running should be a replacement for medication.  That is something that you should chat with your doctor about. What I do know is that when you feel depressed, running is probably the last thing that you want to do.  What  you will find, is that after only a few minutes of running, your brain begins to secrete hormones that naturally improve your mood.  The act of running can be a great way to improve feelings of depression.

Relieve Stress

The leading cause of many of today’s current ailments is stress, both physical and mental.  Stress can affect your appetite by causing you to overeat or skip meals depleting your body of essential nutrients.  Stress can cause issues with sleep and subconscious thoughts. When you run, you actually force your body to exert excess energy and hormones which lowers stress. Running can be helpful in reducing your chances of developing tension headaches.

 

Before reading this did you realize that running had so many benefits?  You may be surprised to learn all of the many different ways that running can improve your overall health.  This is just the tip of the iceberg.  The truth of the matter is that this is not an exhaustive list of the many benefits that it can offer to your body.  Running can be very beneficial to the body, mind, and spirit.  As you get out and run you will see these and many more benefits in your own life.  You will find that even a short morning run can leave you feeling more focused, healthy and happy.




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