3. Your Knees Will Thank You
Contrary to what you may have heard, running does not wreck your joints. Osteoarthritis (the most common type of arthritis), occurs when joint-cushioning cartilage starts to break down. What is the largest osteoarthritis risk factor besides age? Body Weight. A National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey found that obese women had nearly 4X the risk of knee osteoarthritis than non-obese women; for men, it was 5X the risk. Runners are much more likely to be at an ideal weight than sedentary people, significantly reducing their risk of osteoarthritis. Running also bolsters your cartilage by increasing oxygen flow and flushing out toxins, and by strengthening the ligaments around your joints. Hitting the trail also gives your bones a boost, helping prevent osteoporosis.
4. You Will Stress Less
Runners can provide plenty of anecdotes about the stress-busting powers of their regular jog.