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Mental And Physical Health Benefits Of Running

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Running is tiring, it’s tedious, it’s painful and it’s exhausting. We often hear many complaining about aching knees, strained muscles and how energy consuming it is, not to mention how hot and humid it is to run here in Singapore. So why do people still run? Well, people run for several reasons. The benefits of running include strengthening one’s physical and mental health.

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Ever heard of the quote, “what you put in is what you get out”? In the world of running, this quote holds true. Running requires hard work, perseverance and lots of dedication, but with that you get to reap the benefits of it.

One of the most rewarding benefits of running is how it helps to clear one’s mind. Running is a form of aerobic exercise, which helps one to exhilarate and relax, to counter to negative emotions and to dissipate stress. Helping to reduce levels of the body’s stress hormones, running also stimulates the production of endorphins, which are chemicals in the brain that act as the body’s natural mood elevators, sometimes even called the “runner’s high”. To add on, the repetitive rhythm of running allows the mind to relax, reducing stress. Hence, people who run experience better mental clarity which also means a better overall perception of life.

In addition to improving one’s mental health, running can improve one’s physical health too. According to research, running just fifty minutes a week can help minimise the risk of health threatening diseases such as cancer, as well as extending one’s overall lifespan. To add on, it also strengthens the body’s immunity and hence lowers the risks of getting common illnesses such as cold and flu because running includes circulatory benefits such as getting necessary oxygen and nutrients to all parts of your body more efficiently as compared to non-runners. A more nourished body means it is less susceptible to these illnesses.

Apart from mental and physical benefits, running makes your body healthier and stronger. Due to the physical stress on one’s body when and after running, it encourages you to take better care of yourself, such as staying hydrated, being on a healthier diet or simply getting sufficient sleep. Running also helps to build muscles to maintain a healthier body fat composition, as well as improving one’s cardiovascular health. Research has also shown that running helps improve lung capacity, which allows for more relaxed breathing habits and being able to do more work without getting tired easily.

Running is a remarkable way to achieve a healthier lifestyle while at the same time relieving stress, maintaining mental clarity.

10 October 2020

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