How Running Just Five Minutes a Day Can Add Three Years To Your Life

Think you don’t have enough time to improve your health? Did you know that running as little as 5 to 10 minutes a day can decrease mortality rates by 30% and cardiovascular disease risks by 45% and even add 3 years to your life? Sure it can!

A study published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology reported that running as little as five to 10 minutes a day could reduce the risk of all-cause mortality by 30 per cent, reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease by 45 per cent, and add three years to your life.

“Runners across all five quintiles of weekly running time, even the lowest quintile of (less than) 51 min/week, had lower risks of all-cause and CVD (cardiovascular disease) mortality compared with non-runners,” said the study authors, who hail from Iowa State, Louisiana State, the University of South Carolina and the University of Queensland.

Even runners who gave up the habit sometime during the 15-year period under study had a lower risk of all-cause mortality than those who never ran. But by far the most impressive reduction in mortality risk was among those who ran consistently.

What if you’ve never run longer than it takes to catch a bus or get out of the rain? Don’t fret: Working up to five minutes of running a day is easy. Start with 30 seconds of running, followed by 60 seconds of walking. Repeat 10 times. Keep it up every day for two weeks. On Week 3, increase your running interval to 45 seconds, walking for 60 seconds before you start to run again. Repeat eight times.

Continue to increase the running interval by 15 seconds every two weeks until you’re running for five minutes. Remember: You don’t need to run fast to reap the health benefits. Keep the pace somewhere between easy and manageable, which will make your progression from walker to runner more enjoyable.

For those already comfortable running for more than five minutes, keep in mind that even a short run has benefits. So on those days when time constraints make it impossible to get your normal run in, even five or 10 minutes at lunch or after work is worthwhile. Read more…

Ilen Bell is a certified fitness professional and co-founder of Black Fitness Today. His passion for community advocacy, producing relevant stories and providing tools and resources that cater to the underserved African American community remain at the forefront. His credentials include advanced education in exercise science and internet marketing, the fitness industry highly-respected certified strength and conditioning specialist certification, and multiple web fitness series on top websites LIVESTRONG.com and eHOW.com. He is focused on further building explosive, dynamic and approachable brands to help the African American man and woman feel empowered, valued and identified in the global health and fitness industry.

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