Running has so many benefits and does amazing things for our physical health, fitness, and mental health.
Running Is Great For Our Body And Mind
What can cause some side effects when running too much, it can increase our risk of injury or otherwise damaging our body or our health, and running may not be the best form of exercise for people with certain pre-existing medical conditions.
If we have severe osteoarthritis in our knees, running may further exacerbate our joint pain, and a low-impact exercise may be a better option.
And running too much or increasing our training volume too quickly can potentially cause significant injuries, such as tendinitis, shin splints, stress fractures, plantar fasciitis, and runner’s knee.
However, running has proof of supporting numerous mental and physical health benefits for runners.
What Is A Runner’s Body?
We should focus that it is important to establish that runners come in all shapes, sizes, skin tones, gender identities, and body weights.
If we run, we have a runner’s body. Our body allows us to run, and we should feel comfortable and confident calling ourself a runner even if you do not have a typical runner’s physique that might be seen among elite marathon runners or sprinters.
When most people think of a runner’s body, they focus on a long, lean, toned marathon runner.
While it is true that many distance runners at the elite and professional level have a lean build, low body fat percentage, and toned legs, there are plenty of successful and highly competitive marathon runners with more of a muscular build, and age groupers who carry quite a bit more body weight but are still super competitive runners.
Running is a very diverse sport including all sorts of race distances, from something as short as 1000 meters all the way up to the marathon and even Ultra.
A sprinter’s body or a middle-distance runner‘s body actually looks quite a bit different from a marathon runner’s body at the elite level.
Sprinters tend to have a very muscular build, and although they are lean in terms of their body fat percentage, their total muscle mass and build are usually bigger than a distance runner.
No matter how we start our running journey in terms of our physique, we can improve our runner’s body through running, following a healthy diet, and supplementing with strength training workouts.
1. Running Strengthens Our Heart and Lungs
Running is one of the best forms of aerobic exercise because it is a total-body, high-impact activity. It increases our heart rate and respiration rate.
Consistent running strengthens the heart and lungs and causes other beneficial adaptations to the cardiovascular system, such as increasing the elasticity of the blood vessels and forming new capillaries in the skeletal muscles.
These adaptations help increase our stamina or aerobic performance, decrease blood pressure, and improve the efficiency of our cardiovascular system as a whole, decreasing the relative workload on the heart.
Because our heart muscle becomes stronger, our blood plasma volume increases, and our muscles become more efficient at extracting and using oxygen for energy.
Running can also decrease our resting heart rate. Again, this favourable adaptation decreases the amount of work that our heart has to do over the course of a day.
We should appreciate that running improves the health of our cardiovascular system, running can increase our life span.
2. Running Can Support Eye Health
We don’t often think about the health benefits of running in terms of our eyes, but studies suggest that running may help reduce the risk of cataracts, which cloud our vision.
Because running can decrease our risk of other conditions that affect our vision, such as type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, and obesity, it may also help protect our vision in other ways as well.
3. Running Reduces the Risk of Chronic Diseases
In addition to the well-known reduction in cardiovascular disease due to consistent running, running has also been shown to decrease the risk of other common chronic diseases such as hypertension, type 2 diabetes, hypothyroidism, and even certain cancers.
There is evidence to suggest that aerobic exercise, such as running, can be as effective at reducing blood pressure as anti-hypertensive medications.
4. Running Improves the Health of Our Joints
Many people expressed concern about the potential risk of experiencing joint problems due to running.
However, although some runners do suffer from knee injuries and knee pain, research actually suggests that running can improve the health of our joints and decrease the risk of arthritis.
Some research has shown that marathoners and long-distance runners may have healthier knees than low active age-matched people rather than worse knees.
Also, studies have found that running can improve the spine’s health, which is a wonderful benefit of running since low-back pain is one of the most common chronic causes of pain and debility in adults.
5. Running Strengthens Our Legs
Running can strengthen the muscles in our legs, especially if we do hill training and speed workouts. Running primarily strengthens the quads, glutes, hamstrings, and calves, but we will also strengthen our core, hip flexors, adductors, shoulders, and arms. Having stronger legs has many benefits. And to add some weekly strength workouts, having some stronger muscles will help support a better running form and speed.
6. Running Strengthens Our Bones
When we run, our body is subjected to forces that are equivalent to approximately 2-3 our bodyweight with each step.
Although the high-impact nature of running can make it a poor choice for people with osteoporosis or severe joint pain, or arthritis, if our body is strong and can tolerate the impact stress, running is one of the most effective forms of exercise for increasing bone density.
This is due to the fact that bones are adaptive tissues. They respond to the stresses that are placed upon them in a dynamic relationship.
With no running, bone density can decrease, but with regular high-impact exercise such as running, bones are stimulated to increase health and density.
Stronger bones are more resilient, and a higher bone density decreases our risk of osteoporosis and fractures later in life.
Does Running Tone Our Body?
Many new runners are wondering what running legs before and after look like. Does running tone our body and our legs?
Running can definitely tone our legs because it can build muscle mass while simultaneously decreasing body fat percentage.
Muscle tone generally refers to the amount of visible muscle definition we have and the firmness and feel of our muscles.
The degree of muscle tone or muscle definition we will get from running depends mostly on our body fat percentage, which is influenced not only by how much we run and what types of workouts we do, but also according to our diet.
Focus On Some Good Nice Runs Weekly, Feel Healthier, Better, Stronger, More Positive And Happier!