According to the World Health Organization (WHO), adults within the ages of 18 to 64 years should get a minimum of 150 minutes of physical activity every week. Those aged 5 to 17 should accumulate at least 60 minutes of physical activity per day. Jogging provides an easy yet effective method of meeting your weekly target of physical activity. Some of the benefits of jogging include:
Promotes Weight Loss
Jogging provides you with a cost-effective method of losing weight and maintain a healthy lifestyle. When you are jogging, your body will be burning calories, so that you can get the energy that you need for that activity. And if your body doesn’t have adequate calories from eating food, then it will be forced to tap into its energy reserves to supply you with the energy that you need. This means that regular jogging can reduce the amount of fat in your body, thus helping you to meet your weight loss goals. As long as you are burning more calories than you are consuming, you will eventually start losing weight. Also, regular exercises can also help to boost your metabolic rate. If you are exercising regularly, your body will burn calories faster, thus contributing directly to your weight loss goals. If you’ve always wanted to shed some excess pounds and attain a healthy-looking body, then you should consider jogging. A 30-minute jogging session at least 3 times per week will speed up your metabolism and help you to lose weight in a healthy manner.
Increases Bone Strength
Your bones weaken as you age. Fortunately, you can slow down this process through exercises such as jogging. According to a study published by the University of Michigan, you can achieve increased bone density by performing 12 to 20 minutes of weight-bearing exercise, at least thrice per week. Jogging is essentially a weight-bearing exercise. Therefore, it has the potential of building bone strength. If you run or jog regularly, new bone tissue will form, so that your bones can adequately support your increased activity levels. Apart from forming new bone tissue, jogging will also increase blood flow throughout your body, which helps to build healthier and stronger bones. The more time you spend jogging, the more your bones will be forced to support higher weight levels. And this translates to increased bone density. Having stronger and healthier bones comes with numerous benefits. First, it minimizes the chances of bone fracture when you fall. Second, it will reduce the chance of developing degenerative bone disease or other issues associated with weak bones.
When it comes to strengthening and toning muscles, most people only think of strength and resistance exercises. However, jogging is also a powerful exercise for building and strengthening your muscles. A regular jogging program can give your muscles a defined and toned look while enhancing your cardiovascular system too. Whenever you are running, you mainly utilize muscles in your lower body such as the calves, hamstrings, hip flexors, gluteus maximus, and quadriceps. And as you might probably know, you can only make your muscles, stronger, bigger and more efficient, if you are constantly using them.
Going for a long, demanding job will definitely push your muscles past their comfort. And if you do that regularly, your muscles will eventually grow and become stronger, as opposed to simply using them for walking. Every time you jog, you will cause small tears in your leg muscles. When these tears heal, you will end up with more muscle mass, as a result of the additional tissue. It’s important to note that strong, powerful legs will improve your body balance and stability. If your work involves standing for long hours, you will be better equipped to handle the physical demands of your occupation, as opposed to someone with weak leg muscles.
Promotes Heart Health
One of the key benefits of jogging is that it will make your heart more efficient and stronger. Jogging, running and other aerobic exercises, require a higher amount of blood flow and circulation in your body. The higher amount of blood flow will be needed to supply nutrients and oxygen to the cells while removing waste. As a result, your heart will be forced to work harder. Overtime, jogging will strengthen the walls of your heart, resulting in higher efficiency. Running at least 20-30 minutes 3 to 4 times every week can also help to reduce your cholesterol levels and blood pressure. Also, jogging will improve your body’s oxygen and blood delivery systems. In short, jogging will enhance your heart’s capacity to pump more blood throughout your body, with minimal effort. Therefore, you will enjoy an improved physical performance. It will also reduce the risk of heart attacks, strokes, and arterial diseases. You will also enjoy a healthier and longer life.
Boosts Your Immune System
Jogging can also strengthen your body’s capacity to fight off infections. According to Running Magazine, people who jog, run or perform aerobic exercises moderately, have a stronger immune system, compared to people who are not active. Moderate or light running or jogging will circulate white blood cells throughout the body faster, which helps to fight and eliminate disease-causing organisms like bacteria, fungi, and viruses. Also, when you run, there will be an increase in body temperature, which might prevent the growth of bacteria. If you’ve been having a persistent cold, maybe it’s time you consider going for a jog.
Keeps Your Mind Fresh and Healthy
Apart from the physical health benefits, regular jogging also comes with numerous psychological benefits. Some of the physiological benefits that you will get from regular jogging include stress relief, increased mental flexibility, as well as increased confidence. When you are jogging, you can use that session to focus on a nagging issue. Also, sticking to your jogging regimen during a time of stress helps you to build greater resilience, which means that you will be better equipped to handle any challenge that comes your way. You can also use your jogging sessions to give yourself some much-needed breathing space, in case you are going through some difficult moments.
Another physiological benefit of regular jogging is that it helps to boost your confidence. For instance, when you started jogging, you would only manage to go a short distance and rest. But after some time, you have now improved considerably, and you can now go a few kilometers without resting. Even if the improvement is not dramatic, it can enhance your confidence significantly. According to a 2013 study, jogging can also enhance your mood and reduce depressive symptoms. Less depression, less tension, less stress, and less fatigue, are just a few of the benefits that you will experience with regular jogging. Therefore, if you are always feeling tired, stressed, irritated or depressed, then you should consider incorporating a jogging session into your routine.
Versatile and Affordable
Unlike other fitness activities where you have to invest in expensive gear, you only need a single pair of jogging or running sneakers to start jogging. Besides that, you can jog at your home, around your neighborhood, in a local park or you can simply jog outside in the wild. In short, it’s a versatile sport that gives you the freedom to exercise where you want. And as you jog, you will get an opportunity to soak in some fresh air, interact with nature or even socialize with other joggers. You might have probably heard one of those stories where couples met when they were jogging – and ended up getting married. You might even meet a future business partner while jogging. Without a doubt, jogging opens up numerous opportunities for socializing. For instance, you can choose to jog alone, jog with a partner or even join a local jogging club. Whether you want to jog alone or jog with others, jogging provides a great means of getting into shape without spending too much money.
Boosts Your Stamina
Stamina refers to the reserve energy that keeps you going or doing something for a longer period – even when you feel as if you should quit. And jogging can help you to build body stamina. The longer you keep jogging, the higher your stamina will be. Most athletes use jogging as a means of enhancing their stamina. For instance, you might have seen boxers, footballers, as well as players of various sports going for morning runs and jogs. While regular jogging helps to keep them in peak physical condition, it also helps them to build endurance and body stamina. When you jog regularly, you will eventually enhance your lung capacity, which means your body can absorb and even process more oxygen. And as noted above, jogging also helps to build a stronger heart. When you combine enhanced lung capacity, a stronger heart, and increased body stamina, you will find yourself performing at higher levels than you are used to. Having more endurance and stamina will increase productivity in various aspects of your life.
Without a doubt, jogging offers numerous benefits, both physically and psychologically. It helps you to lose weight and maintain a healthy lifestyle while providing stress relief and boosting your overall productivity. However, as much as moderate running or jogging comes with numerous benefits, overdoing it can be counterproductive. Therefore, it’s important to strike an ideal balance of duration, intensity, and frequency. Also, you should mix it up with other activities like swimming, skating or biking – to give your body a balanced workout.