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Jogging: This is how your health benefits

by Josephine Andrews
Published: Last Updated on 360 views

Jogging is good for your health. Running through the countryside at a leisurely or fast pace trains the body, mind and immune system. In addition, you can lace up your jogging shoes anytime and anywhere and start jogging. Find out here why you should jog, which illnesses and ailments you can benefit from, what pace is most effective for your health and what equipment you need.

Jogging – that’s why you should do it

Healthy, disciplined, slim – all attributes that runners have. Jogging has positive connotations. But what exactly does jogging do? On the one hand, it has a positive effect on the blood vessels, it cleans them, so to speak. The lungs also benefit: Regular running increases their performance and ensures that they transport more oxygen to the heart. In addition, regular jogging strengthens muscles, tendons and ligaments, the connective tissue becomes tighter and agility is maintained.

By the way, there is an all-clear for strength athletes who also like jogging: muscle building and running go well together. Endurance training can even maximize muscle gains with the right diet and stimulus for growth through running intensities.

In addition, jogging makes you happier, more relaxed and even forgetfulness is said to decrease through jogging.

Jogging: when does the health effect appear?

How long you have to walk for it is manageable. According to studies, five to ten minutes are enough to achieve positive health effects, you should not overdo it. Because the body needs rest periods in order to recover and adapt to the training stimuli. If you don’t give him these breaks, in the worst case he will take them through injuries.

By the way, you don’t have to take a complete break from jogging if you have back pain, because total relief often does more harm than good. If the pain persists hours after the training session, it is better to talk to a sports medicine doctor or physiotherapist.

Jogging & calorie consumption

As with other sports, the following applies to calorie consumption: jogging is only as effective as your physical constitution, disposition and intensity, frequency and length of the runs dictate.

Of course there are approximations. On average, an 80-kilogram runner burns more than 900 kilocalories in an hour by jogging. Sport is therefore excellent for losing weight, as you burn a lot of calories in a comparatively short time. Nevertheless, jogging only helps you lose weight if you don’t eat up the calories you just burned off straight away after jogging. And that’s quick: A reward blueberry muffin, for example, shovels around 400 calories into the energy account – you have to jog for 30 to 40 minutes.

Jogging: How to do it right

There is no such thing as “properly jogging”. Everyone has their own running style. That’s fine too, as long as you don’t get any orthopedic problems. For example, if you put your foot down on your heel and let it slap the floor unchecked, you have a much higher risk of injury in the long run than someone who pushes off with pre-tensioned muscles.

A clean running technique is not only good for your health, it also allows you to jog more efficiently. The speed and distance covered then increase with the same energy output. Most world-class runners have a midfoot strike (like splashing in a puddle), arms bent at 90 degrees or closer to the body, hips stable and slightly forward (like pushing a shopping cart with your pelvis). want). They lift their knees, their eyes fixed on the ground a few feet in front of them, their heads straight.

A good way to hone your running technique is the running abc, a collection of exercises such as heels or bouncing hops. Basically, it is helpful to have a professional running coach or a club show you the appropriate techniques.

Jogging: Get in the right way

In principle, any healthy adult of normal weight can jog.

How often a beginner should slip into running shoes, at what speed and with what equipment you can get started can be found in the article Jogging for Beginners.

Jogging – speed and pace

Basically, you should always start slowly to allow muscles and tendons to warm up. If you don’t, you risk injury.

The speed at which you continue after you have run in depends on you: because what each individual finds pleasant and affordable is linked to their individual fitness and ability. While beginners and leisurely runners may maintain a pace of 7 to 8 km/h over a longer period of time, ambitious runners manage 12, 13 or more km/h without getting short of breath. A good guideline is: you should be able to have a conversation while jogging.

But: Running at the same pace every time keeps you fit, but it is a bit monotonous and does not lead to an increase in performance. This requires a change of pace, which means you should jog faster and slower during a workout. By the way, you can also lose weight with it. One study found that sprint intervals boost fat burning .

Jogging – breathing properly

You can hardly jog for kilometers without air. Breathing and breathing technique are therefore important factors for fun and success when jogging. Conscious breathing is healthy. Breathing is relaxed, there are no unpleasant air congestions in the chest and the blood is supplied with oxygen more effectively – this also prevents unpleasant stitches in the side.

Contrary to some claims, there is no perfect breathing technique for running. Jogging with a fixed double, triple or quadruple step rhythm is neither necessary nor useful.

The only important thing is to breathe deep into your stomach – and then when you need it. If you then make sure to exhale vigorously so that no “air residues” remain in the lungs, you are on the right track.

By the way: breathe calmly through your mouth. The so-called nasal breathing does not inspire, but simply provides too little air to jog vigorously.

jogging in winter

Snow on the streets and frozen puddles – jogging in winter has its pitfalls, but it can also be fun. However, you should still pay attention to a few points.

You can find out what needs to be considered when jogging in winter in the article Jogging in winter .

Jogging after eating and eating after jogging

The last large meal should be eaten two to three hours before jogging to give the body time to digest. If you are afraid of a drop in blood sugar during training or competition, you can eat a sports bar, a banana or toast with honey beforehand. After jogging, the body is particularly receptive to nutrients for about two hours. If you eat carbohydrates and protein during this time (banana with quark, chocolate milk, rolls with cheese), it helps the body to regenerate.

Jogging – equipment for beginners and intermediates

Which jogging equipment makes sense depends, among other things, on how often jogging is on your program during the week and how ambitious you are in this sport.

A pair of sneakers, a cotton shirt and jogging pants are sufficient for getting started with walking breaks and short laps. However, if you run regularly, you should acquire a small basic set of equipment, the minimum of which should be good running shoes.

Shoes: A suitable shoe offers comfort and safety when jogging – in any weather. It also supports the body by absorbing shock loads and can compensate for misalignments with special support elements. Depending on the terrain you are primarily on (e.g. asphalt or forest paths), there are different shoe models with more or less cushioning. In order for the shoe to fit, you should buy it in a specialist shop and, if possible, jog a lap (on the treadmill) with it beforehand.

Clothing: Modern running clothing consists of so-called functional materials. Unlike cotton, they don’t soak up moisture (cools the body down). Rather, their hollow fibers work according to the candle wick principle and direct condensation to the material surface, where it evaporates. A short-sleeved shirt and elastic running trousers are sufficient as basic equipment. Socks, undershirts, waistcoats and jackets can follow later.

GPS and heart rate monitor: These technical aids are not a must, but they can be useful. On the one hand, a heart rate monitor is a useful accessory for training control if you know your heart rate values ​​and want to train accordingly. On the other hand, the GPS data collector on the wrist is a motivator because the average speed (min./km), current speed, mileage and time etc. are displayed while jogging.

Who is jogging suitable for?

In principle, anyone who is not seriously ill or overweight can jog. If you are new to (this) sport, you should have a medical check-up before you start jogging. Running has advantages in many ways, so the question “Is jogging healthy?” can be answered with a resounding “yes” in most cases – as long as you don’t overdo it.

Jogging is particularly suitable for people who, for example, have the following symptoms or do not want to get them in the first place:

  • Cardiovascular diseases: Moderate and regular endurance exercise slows down the aging process of the cells in the vascular system and thus increases protection against cardiovascular diseases. Jogging can counteract high blood pressure or prevent it from occurring in the first place and helps to keep cholesterol levels in check.
  • Diabetes mellitus: studies show that exercise is more effective than diet in diabetic patients . People with diabetes who are physically active have a 38 percent reduced risk of dying prematurely.
  • Weak immune system: Well-trained people have more anti-inflammatory immune cells than untrained people. Colds, allergies and autoimmune diseases are therefore often not so important.
  • Stress/burnout/depression/anxiety disorders: Running improves mood and increases general well-being.

Jogging & Pregnancy

You don’t have to give up jogging during pregnancy – especially if you’ve been running before.

Jogging with a baby bump? You can find everything on the subject in the article jogging during pregnancy .

Jogging – mistakes to avoid

False ambition: Injuries happen when runners overestimate themselves. Increase your running distances by a maximum of ten percent from week to week.

Jogging with a cold: Running is taboo if you have a cold that goes beyond a scratchy throat or runny nose, or if you have other infectious diseases. Otherwise there is a risk that the infection will spread to the heart. This can lead to long-term damage.

Jogging when overweight: For people who are severely overweight or have orthopedic problems, the strain caused by jogging can be too great. For them, Nordic Walking is the better alternative to develop an exercise routine.

Jogging without warming up: If you don’t warm up enough before training, you risk muscle and tendon injuries or joint problems.

Long runs without water /food: Long workouts (over 60 to 90 minutes) without hydration can lead to fatigue and collapse.

Fast jogging in the cold: The so-called open window effect occurs especially in the cold season: the immune system is weakened and the body susceptible to infections, especially after a fast run. In addition, you breathe more deeply when jogging, the cold can irritate the respiratory tract.

Excessive jogging with sore muscles: Those who exert themselves too much with sore muscles may aggravate the tiny muscle damage and delay healing. Better: moderate jogging. In this way, the substances produced by the inflammatory reaction are broken down more quickly.

Jogging – that’s behind it

When the first runners trotted through Germany’s streets and forests as part of the trimming wave in the 1970s, they were exotic in strange tracksuits. Hardly anyone ran to keep fit. That has now changed. In the 1990s, jogging became a popular sport. In a 2016 Deloitte survey, 29 percent of respondents said they jog regularly.

You don’t have to run a marathon to do something for your health. How often jogging is necessary and useful per week depends on the running goal and the individual condition. According to the current state of knowledge, however, one to almost two and a half hours a week is considered optimal for health, ideally divided up into three jogging times a week.

Beginners and those with experience can get tips on training, nutrition and equipment from quite a number of specialist magazines, via web portals or blogs. However, if you want to be on the safe side and train according to an individual program for maximum health benefits, you should find a coach or join a club.

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