Why Running is the Best Exercise to Stay Fit?

An hour of running is more beneficial than an hour of any other physical activity like swimming, cycling, etc. There are numerous reasons why you should start running.

Whether you would like to lose weight, participate in competitive races, get a healthier or fitter body, or beat the stress, running serves as a one-stop solution for achieving your fitness goals.

What makes running so special is the wide variety of physical, mental, and emotional benefits experienced by runners.

It is effective as a solo-form of exercise, and you can also combine it with other forms of exercises for achieving comprehensive body fitness.

Why You Should Include Running In Your Fitness Regimen?

Running Lowers Mortality Risks

As per the findings of multiple large-scale studies, running has been associated with lowering all-cause mortality risk by 30-45% in the runners. On average, runners live three years more than those who don’t run.

Research has shown that every hour spent running can add seven more hours to a runner’s life. The study also included runners who used to smoke and drink alcohol. Even then, running reduced mortality risks in them by 25-40%.

Running Burns Tons of Calories

As soon as you start running, you begin to lose weight rapidly. An hour of walking burns about 300 calories, while an hour of running burns approx 800 calories.

Running provides a vigorous and efficient workout for your body that helps in shedding extra kilos. If you are fit and healthy, running ensures that you maintain your ideal body weight.

Running increases your excess post-exercise oxygen consumption (EPOC). Thus, by including running in your fitness regimen, you will burn more calories after your workouts. With every mile you run, you burn 100 calories in less than 10 minutes.

As compared to a one-hour weight-training workout, you will burn twice the amount of calories with one-hour running. With running, you can control and maintain weight loss for longer durations.

Running Increases Cardiovascular Fitness and Improves Lung Capacity

Running is an ideal high-intensity exercise that is perfect for individuals with any fitness level. It leads to increased cardiovascular fitness.

Running works wonders in strengthening the heart, reducing cholesterol and blood pressure, and retaining the arteries’ elasticity. It also leads to reduced risks of heart diseases. You can easily customize your running workouts as per your fitness level.

Running boosts your lungs’ capacity and leads to increased volume and exchange of gases in the lungs. This keeps your circulatory system healthy, resulting in improved blood circulation in the body.

Running Suppress Appetite

When you run, your body releases peptide YY hormone. This hormone suppresses appetite and reduces hunger pangs so that you eat less in the day. It is unlike other forms of exercises that make you eat more for replenishing your energy levels.

As per the study published in a leading international journal, runners were found to have significantly reduced the hormone Ghrelin hormone that is known to stimulate the appetite.

Runners have elevated levels of both blood sugar and blood lactate that reduce the hunger pangs even after the high-intensity running sessions as compared to other workouts.

Running Treats the Symptoms of Insomnia

If you have insomnia, then you should start running as it helps you to sleep much better.

When you run with high-intensity, it increases the core temperature of your body. This temperature drops post-running and helps you to fall asleep.

Moreover, running also reduces anxiety and depressive symptoms and enables you to enjoy a sound sleep.

Regular Running Increases Body Stamina

Regular running builds your leg muscles and improves your body’s stamina. This helps you to cover more distance and propels yourself further while running. This increased muscular strength helps in absorbing impacts on your joints and ankles during running.

Running Strengthens Bones and Knees

Running is a high-impact workout that strengthens the runner’s bones and knees. When you run, it remakes your bones and muscles together. This is better than cycling or swimming that doesn’t work on bones.

Running works as a weight-bearing exercise that improves joint stability, strengthens the musculoskeletal system and builds bones.

Contrary to the popular notion, running does not wreck your knees. It reduces the risks of knee osteoarthritis. It strengthens the joints’ ligaments and increases the flow of nutrients to the cartilage in the knees.

Running Boosts Your Immune System

Running improves your body immunity as it increases your capacity for fighting against infections such as the common cold. Moreover, the common cold symptoms and other infections in runners are much less severe compared to non-runners.

If you feel a little bit sick, try light jogging for half an hour as it stimulates your immune system for fighting against infections.

Running Provides Versatile and No-Cost Workouts

Running is a versatile physical exercise that can be performed almost anywhere. It does need any equipment such as machines, dumbbells, or yoga mats. All you need is your running sneakers and a tracksuit to start running.

You can run on various tracks and explore new places, from wooded trails to forgotten streets. It allows you to break away from the monotonous daily grind and experience new environments. It takes you closer to nature and enables you to feel eternal peace of mind.

Running is not something you have to do at a fixed time. You can run practically at any time as per your schedule. You can hit the roads or tracks anytime when they are less congested.

You can run in any weather conditions, including summer, winter, or rainy seasons.

Running Can Help With Stress Relief

Running has positive effects on mental health; it works great for treating the symptoms of stress, depression, and emotional strain. It releases feel-good hormones, “endorphins”, that gives you a runner’s high and boost your mood.

As per the research published in Cerebral Cortex, long-distance running leads to increased opioid binding across the brain’s various areas. This elevated opioid binding causes the release of endorphins that leave the individuals overjoyed with ecstatic feelings.

Running Allows You to Bond With New People

Running can also be used as an opportunity for socializing with people. You can meet new people when you run into unexplored territory. You can become a part of the runner’s community or club and run together as a group.

It helps in developing a sense of community. You can set your fitness goals and achieve them together. Running in a group kills your boredom and keeps you motivated. You can also share your concerns and experiences with your running partners.


Running is the best exercise to stay fit. It comes packed with truck-loads of benefits. It ensures that you live longer. It helps in the faster burning of calories and rapid weight-loss as compared to walking.

Running elevates your cardiovascular fitness and boosts your lung capacity. It reduces the cravings for eating multiple times and also helps you to sleep better. It does not need any equipment. It strengthens bones and knees. It provides great socialization opportunities.

If you are a new runner, ensure that you build your running workout gradually to reap its maximum advantages over long periods.


Preksha is passionate about writing articles that will inspire readers to make better choices. You will find her eating desserts for lunch, dinner and any time of the day. Also, she is the chief playlist engineer for any road trip.

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