Running makes the lungs strong. When you run, you breathe quicker and heavier. This forces the lungs to use all of the tissues which helps develop unused lung tissue, making the lungs work better. In certain cases, ex-smokers who run regularly are able to get their lungs back in shape.
Apart from helping the body and organs work better, running offers some other benefits as well. Running is a great mood elevator. Just run, and you feel as if your stress has wiped off. This happens in case of other exercises as well, but the effect is highly pronounced in running. A chemical called beta-endorphin is released during and after you run. It dulls the sense of pain brought on by exercise. One of the side effects of this chemical is a state of euphoria. Some runners actually develop an addiction to this chemical. Those with past alcohol or drug problems have been able to use running as a part of their rehabilitation program. Others just like the feeling that this chemical gives them.
You might be thinking that running would increase your appetite. However, it’s exactly the opposite. Running helps lower your appetite and desire to eat. This is yet another aspect of how running helps promote weight loss. When you are on a running regime, it is imperative for you to keep close tabs on your diet. Just ensure that you don’t under eat. Having a well balanced diet is essential for you to get a good running performance that can trigger off a flurry of health benefits.
Over the years, running has been used to treat people with psychological disorders such as depression and insomnia. There are varying schools of thought on why this works. One is the beta-endorphin theory as mentioned in one of the preceding paragraphs. Beta-endorphin makes you feel good about yourself in a natural way. Another school of thought avers that running gives overweight people something else to focus on. This can work wonders for them, for they are always pesky about the way they look. And when they run, they start believing that they have it in them to make things work for them. Thus, they get an engrossing objective to look forward to. Psychologists and health experts all over the world believe that thinking positive can make the body and inner organs work positively. You can actually winnow out a lot of nagging health problems just by staying fit and thinking positive.
Specially designed and supervised running programs can help even people who have had heart attacks. With well regulated running under an expert’s supervision, such people can truncate the risks of a second heart attack. Running helps strengthen the heart muscles, and bolsters the overall health of the heart patients. Running helps trim down the effects of depression usually associated with heart patients.
Running can be a great help in preventing osteoporosis. Other exercises can also be helpful; however, running works the best due to its continual impact. When you run, the bones are put under strain. This strain or impact makes them more dense and hard. With continual running, the bones become stronger making them highly resistant to conditions like osteoporosis. In fact, even those in the early stages of this disease can be put on a light running regime. This will help increase their bone density.
Apart from the varied health benefits, running perks up your mind-body coordination and concentration. This may sound a tad surprising, but it’s a fact. Just ask yourself, how many times do you have to move to avoid someone or something, when you are running? How many times do you have to alter your movements to adjust to the uneven pavement or to avoid debris on a trail? Well, the answer will be – almost every time you run. Isn’t it? And all these spontaneous movements enable you to improve your mind-body coordination and concentration. You learn to quickly and correctly react to different situations. Your agility and reaction time improve. So, don’t let anyone tell you that running is simple, for there is more to it than what people who don’t run think.
The bottom line is that running is alive with a whole slew of health and wellness benefits. The rhythmic movements while running help improve the cognitive skills, balance, posture, and strength of the runner. Besides improving blood circulation, heart rate, and body posture; running strengthens the body muscles, increases the rate of metabolism, and zaps unwanted fats around the tummy, buttocks, and thigh areas. So, the message for one and all is – stop over stressing yourself! Wring out a few minutes from your crammed schedule to just go out and run.
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