A new year is upon us which means it's a great time to try something new. If you've never given running a try perhaps this article will convince you to at least give it a try. Don't be intimidated or think you can't do it because you're just not a runner. Most “runners” at some point felt the same way you did and despite what you may think, they weren't born runners. I started running while in college because the class fulfilled a graduation requirement and I figured it would be a good way to lose a few pounds. When I first started I couldn't run a mile. I've since completed a marathon, four half marathons and countless 5K and 10K's. Little did I know at the time that there were so many great reasons to run besides losing a few pounds. Here are 10 reasons why this new year you should give running a try.

 

1.      It Doesn't Require a Gym. You don't need a gym membership or any special equipment to lace up your sneakers and go for a run. All you really need is to get out and get moving. You can literally do it anywhere. It's a great way to get out and explore your neighborhood or new area.

 

2.      It's a Great Stress Reliever. Simply going out for a run is a great way to clear your mind and destress. Every single one of us experiences some level of stress daily and although it's not necessarily bad high stress levels can have adverse health effects.

 

 

3.      Strengthens Joints. As we age, we are likely to develop osteoarthritis but studies have shown that runners are less likely to suffer from knee OA. The stronger your joints are, the less pain you will feel. In addition, strong joints will decrease the amount of stiffness you feel.

 

4.      It Improves Your Heart Health. Running is shown to decrease your chances of developing cardiovascular diseases and is often recommended to those who suffer from high blood pressure. It also decreases your resting heart rate which means your heart doesn't have to work as hard.

 

5.      Great Leg Workout. The biggest muscles of your body are used and required for running so it's a great way to get a leg workout in without having to squat or lift weights. Also, who doesn't want tone legs especially when summer time comes around.

 

6.      It Makes You Happy. Runner's high is real and will leave you feeling calm, balanced and happy. Running releases endorphins which make you feel good. They are natures opiates.

 

7.      Adds Years to Your Life. By running a few times a week you can live longer. Data has shown that runners usually live 3.2 years longer than non-runners.

 

8.      Helps Your Metabolism. Running consistently will help keep your metabolism from slowing down. This can lead to a reduction in your body-fat percentage and weight loss.

 

9.      You Can Make New Friends. You don't have to run alone, in fact you'll be surprised to know that there are running clubs in your area for all running levels. Why not meet like minded people, learn a few tips from more experienced runners and make some new friends.

 

 

10.  Keeps Your Brain Sharp. Exercise has shown to keep the brain sharp and may even reduce the symptoms of Dementia and help protect the brain against Alzeimer's.