As if the runner's high wasn't reason enough to lace up your running shoes and get out the door. Running is good not only for your body but also for your mind and mood. You can stave off Alzheimer's, lower your risk of cancer and help prevent osteoporosis. Plus, you can make your time on the track count by raising money for charity with the help of an app. What are you waiting for?
While it might not help you remember exactly where you put your keys, an article published in the Psychonomic Bulletin & Review shares evidence that regular exercise as you get older helps keep your mind — especially your "working memory" — sharp. And no matter how old you are, you can see benefits from a few laps around the track.
In a report from the American College of Sports Medicine, women aged 30 and older who exercised frequently — think more than one hour per week — had a much smaller chance of developing breast cancer. But the key to reaping the benefits of that activity: You have to make yourself sweat. And unless you're already an ultramarathoner, we're betting 30 minutes on the treadmill will do the trick.
If you want to make your workout make a difference in someone else's life, too, start using the Charity Miles app when you run, walk or cycle. For every mile you move, Charity Miles sponsors will donate money to the charity of your choice.
Not only does running help you build bone and muscle mass, it's actually good for your knees as well. According to Dr. David Felson, an epidemiologist at Boston University, because running is a weight-bearing exercise it actually helps strengthen and build the cartilage in your joints.
A study published in the Archives of Internal Medicine showed that regular exercise reduced anxiety in patients. So next time you're struggling with a big decision or a stressful situation, lace up those trainers and clear your head. And the more often you run, the more benefits you'll see.
There's no reason you have to go it alone. Enlist a running buddy or make new friends by joining a running group in your area. Not only will working out with a partner keep you accountable, it's a great way to catch up with friends in spite of your busy schedules.
No matter what it is that finally motivates you to put on those running shoes and hit the streets, you want to make sure you look fab while you're doing it. Check out the Running 2014 — Gear in Action campaign from Dick's Sporting Goods and get moving!
This post was sponsored by Dick's Sporting Goods.
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