Here’s How Far You Actually Need to Run to Reap the Health Benefits

If you like to run but don’t looove to run, here’s some news that’s sure to put a bounce in your step. A recent review of studies found that to score the major health perks of running, you don’t have to pound the pavement for long: Jogging just five or six milesa week is enough.

The researchers report that people who logged that many miles over the course of one or two runs (and less than 51 cumulative minutes) per week had a lower risk of certain cancers, stroke, osteoarthritis, high blood pressure, and high cholesterol compared to people who jogged less or not at all.

It gets even better: When the reviewers looked at the effect of running on cardiovascular mortality and death from any cause, they found that the low-mileage group had the same reduction in risk as people who laced up more often and covered more ground every week.

RELATED: 15 Running Tips You Need to Know

“Maximal health benefits of running appear to occur at quite low doses, well below those suggested by the US physical activity guidelines,” the researchers write in the study, which was published in the journal Mayo Clinic Proceedings. (The government recommends 75 minutes of vigorous activity per week.)

But of course, if you’re running to lose weight, the same logic still applies: More steps means more calories burned. You may want to stick to your usual schedule and route. But for anyone who’s been pushing herself on long-distance jaunts in pursuit of optimal health, the new findings may offer some sweet relief.

So what is a good goal to shoot for, according to science?

Carl J. Lavie, MD, the review’s lead author and the medical director of cardiac rehabilitation and prevention at the Ochsner Medical Center in New Orleans, offered this advice to the New York Times: “Running for 20 to 30 minutes, or about a mile-and-a-half to three miles, twice per week would appear to be perfect.”

Read More at health.com

Get more stuff like this
in your inbox

Subscribe to our mailing list and get interesting stuff and updates to your email inbox.

4 Upper-Body Exercises to Steal From Taraji P. Henson’s Workout
Scale Stuck? How To Get Over That Weight-Loss Plateau
10 Ways to Burn More Calories During Any Type of Workout
10 Reasons Why You Should Eat More Asparagus
Fearing disease, Kenyans burn animal carcasses as drought deepens
Misty Copeland Explains Why Emotional Strength Is Her Beauty Secret
Who You Should Love After Loss
8 U.S. Solo Travel Destinations You Probably Haven’t Thought Of
Scale Stuck? How To Get Over That Weight-Loss Plateau
Gwyneth Paltrow Wants You to Take Supplements, But Experts Say You Don’t Really Need Them
Using This Simple Kitchen Tool Helped Me Drop 108 Pounds
This Is How Much Protein You Really Need to Eat in a Day
Cancer Is Partly Caused By Bad Luck, Study Finds
Alcohol Is Good for Your Heart—Most of the Time
Crunch week looms for Sanofi, Roche and GSK at U.S. drugs agency
Israel looks to leverage tech in $50 billion medical marijuana market