Anne Mahlum, our keynote speaker, has discovered the health benefits of running, have you?
1. It's so easy
True, some high-tech gear will make your run more fun, but really, all you need is a good pair of shoes, and a supportive sports bra. It couldn't be simpler.
And everyone knows how to run. You may not have perfect form yet, but you already know how to place one foot in front of the other and settle into a comfortable pace. No new skills to master, no equipment to buy—just get out there and run.
2. Yet so hard
No other exercise matches running for its ability to make you sweat. The stair-stepper, bike, and other gym staples work you hard, but running blasts the most calories. Running also gives your heart a world-class workout. When your legs hit their stride they squeeze blood toward your heart
3. Your knees will thank you
Running doesn't wreck your joints. A National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey found that obese women had nearly four times the risk of knee osteoarthritis than non-obese women; for men, it was five times the risk. Runners are much more likely to be at a normal weight than members of the sedentary population, significantly decreasing their risk of osteoarthritis.
It goes further than just the benefits of weight loss, too. Running strengthens your cartilage by increasing oxygen flow and flushing out toxins, and by strengthening the ligaments around your joints. It also gives your bones a boost, helping to prevent osteoporosis.
4. You'll stress less
"Nothing beats that feeling when you settle into a strong stride with a powerful rhythm," says Brooke Stevens, a four-time NYC marathoner, "The tension in my neck, back, and shoulders starts to loosen up, and I can think more clearly too."
Running is even used by mental health experts to help treat clinical depression and other psychological disorders such as drug and alcohol addiction.
5. It can prevent disease
Most experts agree that regular exercise reduces the risk of many kinds of cancer including: colon, breast, and lung. One recent study in the British Journal of Cancer calculated that the "most active" (e.g. walked briskly 5-6 hours/week) people were 24 percent less likely to develop colon cancer than the "least active" people (e.g. 30 minutes of walking/week). In a study by the National Cancer Institute, women of a normal weight who reported the highest levels of "vigorous activity" (running, tennis, aerobics) had about a 30 percent lower risk of breast cancer when compared with women who did no vigorous activity.
Joggers also have a leg up against heart disease, stroke, and diabetes, and running has been shown to lower blood pressure, raise good cholesterol, and boost immunity to colds and other viruses.
Join us on September 29th, 2014 in Bismarck for the annual Women’s Health Conference. Anne Mahlum will inspire you to be your best self as well as tell you of her life journey and work with Back on my Feet, a running program for the homeless.
Excerpt from Women's Health Magazine