Running has always been hailed as being good for the health. However, while we may tend to think that running for prolonged time periods at high speed is better, authors of a new study have suggested that running for 5-10 minutes is enough, and that more of it might even be harmful to health.
In a society where sedentariness seems to have established itself, people are more and more encouraged to break the cycle and indulge in sports activities. How much time should be allocated to these activities, though? A new study has suggested that running at a slow pace for a mere 10 minutes is enough for one to reap the benefits of running. Researchers from the Iowa State University stated that their results indicate that slow running for around 5 to 10 minutes per day has positive effects like decreasing mortality rate. That is not all. They have also suggested that running for more time might actually have adverse effects. Uh-oh. As they say, everything should be done in a certain limit: too much or too little of something good is detrimental to health, while the right amount of it does wonders!
The lead author, Duck-Chul “D.C” Lee, evaluated data obtained from 55 137 people from the age of 18 to one 100 years old. The participants were asked to fill in questionnaires to glean data about their level of physical activity. Furthermore, the researchers analysed the causes of deaths of the people. Those who had running activities every week were 30 % less probable to die from all-causes, and 45 % were less likely to die from heart diseases, than those who did not run. Furthermore, those who did run tended to live on average three years more than the non-runners. What stood out most from the results was that those who had decreased risks of mortality would run for less than an hour each week, and also those who would run for more than 3 hours per week. Finally, those who ran slowly for only 5-10 minutes per day also had decreased mortality risk compared with those who would not run.
The researchers concluded that while running is beneficial for the overall health, too much of it might not be better – it could even be harmful. Even 10 minutes of running daily is enough to bring in positive effects.
Too much of running might lead to bone and joint damage. Sometimes, heart attacks may even result from too much running. Other scientists have in the past suggested that marathon running might be detrimental for the heart. Humans have a limit for everything, why would it be any different when it comes to running and exercising in general? Life itself is governed by this principle: have good things in moderate amounts, not too much, not too little; the same goes for running, according to this study.