Tag Archives: jogging

Jogging Creates The Most Brain Cells

The New York Times reports on a new study that had rats try three different kinds of workouts:

  1. Aerobic: running on a treadmill or wheel
  2. Resistance: climbing on a wall with weights attached, to simulate weight training
  3. High Intensity Training (HIT): running very fast, interrupted with periods of not doing that

They then measured how many new brain cells appeared after seven weeks of the routine, and found out that from most to least by group, it was aerobic, HIT, and then resistance — with the resistance group basically having no new brain cells. The HIT group had some, but not nearly as much as the aerobic group. Moral of the story: jogging makes you smarter.

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via The New York Times

Your Feet Pronating While Running Is In Fact Not An Issue

Danish scientists published a study on 900+ novice runners, whose feet they measured and classified to see how much they over- or underpronated. They gave them all the same, neutral shoe — with no pronation correction — and had them run as much as they wanted for a year. In the meantime, they noted all the injuries the runners suffered. What we’ve been told by running shoe stores lately is that pronation causes more injuries, but this study proved the opposite: the runners with neutral feet had slightly more injuries than the pronated ones.



Other researchers agree. “This is an excellent study,” says Bryan Heiderscheit, an associate professor of biomechanics and director of the running clinic at the University of Wisconsin at Madison. The research reinforces a widespread belief among scientists studying running “that pronation doesn’t play much of a role” in injury risk, he says.

The runners all had the same shoes, which didn’t correct pronation, and the pronaters suffered less injuries. Ergo, corrective shoes are nothing but snake oil. Instead, you should just buy comfortable shoes, because many of the injured runners said their shoes weren’t.

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From The British Journal of Sports Medicine, via The New York Times and Lifehacker

Proper Running Form

The 30 second video below, made by Greatist, very quickly shows the elements to having great form while running.

In case you blinked:

  • The ball of the foot is the tough round part just under your big toe. Don’t land on that.
  • Don’t land on your heel either; it sends a lot of force up your leg.
  • Instead, the landing should strike just below the ball of the foot, at the mid-foot, under the arch.
  • Knees should be slightly bent as you land
  • Steps should be soft and springy, not heavy and hard
  • Land just in front of your center of mass, with your leg under your hip
  • Lean forward slightly to use gravity to propel your body, as if you’re always about to fall on your face but keep delaying it by stepping a foot in front of the fall
  • Drive your heel towards your butt after lifting it off the ground
  • Elbows should be bent at roughly right angles and drawn back

This advice agrees pretty well with what Runner’s World wrote on the subject last summer.

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From Greatist, via Lifehacker

Jogging 3x A Week Helps You Live 6 Years Longer

The Copenhagen City Heart Study was started in 1976 and tracks about 20,000 people in that city in order to learn more about heart disease and other health issues. After 35 years, there’s a lot of data there, so the reseearchers decided to crunch it and find out if jogging really is good for you. They looked at about 2,000 joggers at various periods within the 35 years, recorded the amount of time they jog per week and the intensity they do it with, and compared their age at death with that of non-joggers. On average, jogging men lived 6.2 years longer than the non-jogging ones, and the women lived 5.6 years longer.


They also tried to figure out the best jogging regimen: the data shows that running three times a week for about 35 minutes (+/- 15) had the optimum correlation with life expectancy.

“The relationship appears much like alcohol intakes. Mortality is lower in people reporting moderate jogging, than in non-joggers or those undertaking extreme levels of exercise,” said [chief cardiologist of the Copenhagen City Heart Study, Peter] Schnohr. The ideal pace can be achieved by striving to feel a little breathless. “You should aim to feel a little breathless, but not very breathless,” he advised.

Jogging, like exercise in general, does all kinds of good things for the body: boosts the immune system, makes the heart work more efficiently, lowers blood pressure, makes the body more sensitive to insulin, prevents cancer, migraines, the weakness of old age, and Alzheimer’s among other things. Therefore, even though the joggers probably took better care of themselves in other ways too (e.g., diet, not smoking), it’s clear that there is causation at play here, not just correlation.

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From European Society of Cardiology, via The Atlantic

How To Run Good

If you’ve never had a running coach, Runner’s World has the article meant for you. It spells out exactly what makes for the perfect running form, so that you can run the way the pros do:

  • Look straight forward at the horizon, not down
  • Keep your shoulders low and don’t let them creep up
  • Keeps arms bent at a right-angle, fists unclenched, and move them back-and-forth (not side-to-side)
  • Run tall — stretch out, don’t slouch
  • Calibrate your stride so that your legs should land under your body, not in front.
  • Your foot should land with the front part of the heel, and then roll into the toes and spring up
  • Running well means running quietly, so if you’re making noise, your feet are landing too hard

Via Runner’s World

Jogging Helps, Not Hurts, Your Knees

Contrary to the stories we’ve all heard, jogging is good for your joints. Unless you’re more than 20 pounds overweight, or you’ve had knee injuries, running will actually improve your knees. This is because the exercise “appears to stimulate cartilage to repair to minor damage”. The benefit appears even if you’re in your 70s.

So what excuse do you have now? “I’m 30 pounds overweight.” Well then start jogging and get in shape!  Oh wait…