A new study has found that just one hour of running each day could extend a person’s life by as much as seven hours, and that running statistically adds more time to people’s lives than it takes to do.
The study conducted by the Cooper Institute in Dallas using medical and fitness tests found that as little as five minutes of daily running was associated with prolonged life spans, as it combats many of the common risk factors for early death, including high blood pressure and extra body fat around the belly area.
Running also raises aerobic fitness, one of the best-known indicators of an individual’s long-term health.
The data also found that, compared to nonrunners, runners tended to live about three additional years, even if they run slowly or sporadically and smoke, drink or are overweight.
By dedicating only two hours a week to running, which equals roughly six months in a lifetime, the research suggests you can expect an increase in life expectancy of 3.2 years.
And if running’s not your thing, don’t worry.
According to the study, other kinds of exercise also reliably benefited life expectancy, just not to the same degree as running.
Walking, cycling and other activities, even if they required the same exertion as running, typically dropped the risk of premature death by about 12 per cent.