Thinking about doing #Run1000Miles next year? Here’s why it’s a no-brainer, according to science
1000 miles, 1609.344 kilometres, 8000 furlongs, 1.4 million steps, London to Chamonix and back - however you look at it, it’s a long way.
So why run that far in 2019 as part of the #Run1000Miles challenge? The benefits of running are widely known, so here we focus on some of the basics as well as some of the more surprising facts, with the help of some recent scientific research.
It’s great for for your health
10,000 steps per day is often quoted as being a goal to stay active enough to be healthy in the long term. Running the 2.73 miles per day needed for that 1000 miles over the year would see you more than one third of the way to that step count. As recently reported, future doctors are now being taught out how to prescribe physical activity as part of their formal training as a way of improving the nation’s health. Keep the doctor away and run your 2.73 miles per day.
Eat more cake
By running 2.73 miles per day, you will expend roughly the amount of calories as in a cupcake. Not that we’d recommend replacing all those calories by intaking sugar as more exercise will require the right mix of nutrients for adequate recovery. But the general principle is one we love: more miles means more cake!
Need to lose weight? If you can avoid that cake, #Run1000Miles is a great way to shift those Christmas calories. You need to expend 3500 more calories than you take in order to lose 1kg of body mass, so running 1000 miles is the equivalent of 28kg (nearly four and a half stone)! Of course, you may not be doing 1000 miles extra miles compared to normal and you will also have to replace those expended calories with a suitable healthy mix of nutrients.
Boost your mental health
Running has repeatedly been linked to improving mood - “the runner’s high” is no myth. For example, one scientific paper concluded “exercise can be a powerful intervention for clinical depression”.
Many of the comments made by members of our #Run1000Miles Facebook group are around how the goal has helped boost positivity, whether they’ve reached the goal or not. One member said: “The run 1000 miles challenge has kept me positive throughout my partner being diagnosed with terminal cancer. I almost gave up but he insisted that I continue and it has been so helpful for my mental health.”
Reduce age effects
Regular exercise can reduce cognitive decline in older adults, one recent scientific review paper found. The amount needed, according to the conclusions drawn over several studies, was about 52 hours over six months, which you will almost definitely need to put in if you’re on target for the 1000 miles.
Furthermore, another study published this month showed the physical side of exercise’s anti-ageing properties. Scientists found that both endurance training and high-intensity interval training were beneficial when looking at various body markers linked to the ageing process.
One of the more surprising benefits of exercise was highlighted by a recent scientific paper showing that as little as 10 minutes of mild exertion can boost your cognitive function.
See and hear better
Regular exercise has been shown to have a marked positive effect when it comes to so many bodily functions and organs. To cite just one recent example, scientists found that those meeting the recommended dose of physical activity had a lower incidence of glaucoma. Another piece of scientific research linked aerobic fitness to better hearing.
Enjoy the countryside
Finally, by doing as many of your 1000 miles off road and on the trails as possible, you will not only give your joints a break, you’ll be enjoying our beautiful rural environment too. And exercise in green spaces has in itself been shown to have positive effects on physical and mental health.
So, what are you waiting for? Sign up now to #Run1000Miles in 2019. It’s quick and free to do and don’t forget to also join the Facebook #Run1000Miles community to gain all the encouragement you’ll need.
Get kitted out for your #Run1000Miles. Check out the gear on offer from the #Run1000Miles sponsors: