Run from these myths

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Friday, 27 November 2015 1310 Views 0 Comments
Run from these myths

Is running bad for your knees? Does running pose a health risk for older people? We break the most common myths associated with running

1. Running is bad for the knees: If you run, you’ll damage your knees and end up having to get a knee replacement surgery.

Not true; on the contrary, running may actually be good for your knees. Swedish researchers have found that the cartilage in the knees of those who ran was actually better than those who didn’t. Beware, that there can be too much of a good thing. Invest in proper foot-wear, know your pronation, and if you suffer from knee-problems, consult an expert before you begin.

2. Running is not good for older people: It’s a luxury reserved for the young.

Harriette Thompson completed the San Diego Rock ‘n’ Roll marathon in 2015 at the age of 92. Fauja Singh finished the 10 km run at the Hong Kong marathon in 2013, close to his 102nd birthday. If they can do it, so can you. You don’t even have to run marathons; 10 minutes of running a day is good enough. According to Stanford University School of Medicine, elderly joggers have fewer disabilities, remained fit for longer than non-runners and are half as likely to die early. But if you are older and want to embark on a jogging programme, it’s a good idea to get a health check-up first.

3. You have to be in good shape to run: Because fat people can’t run.

You don’t have to be in excellent physical condition to start running. If you’re in good health, you can start tomorrow. It’s important to take it easy; increase speed and distance gradually, and listen to your body.

If you’re overweight, consult a doctor before you begin, and a fitness trainer to help you work out a plan (url).

4. Running guarantees weight loss: It is okay to indulge your sweet-tooth if you run.

It’s true that running is a great way to lose weight. However, to lose weight and ensure that it stays lost, you have to marry your running programme with a proper diet. Don’t expect to lose weight if you run and continue to consume large amounts of fatty and sugary foods.

5. You may get a heart attack while running: It’s a strenuous activity and takes a toll on your ticker.

Strenuous exercise may temporarily increase the odds of getting a heart attack. But running consistently reduces that risk over the long term. According to a 2002 study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association, running an hour or more per week was the most effective way of reducing the risk of coronary heart disease.

6. If you run, you don’t need any other exercise: It is a complete fitness programme.

Running strengthens your muscles, but not all of them. To maximize fitness you must include other forms of exercise such as strength training, which enhances overall fitness and running performance.

Excessive running actually leads to loss of muscle. To combat muscle-loss, you must alternate running with weight training.

7. Walking is as good as running: Covering the same distance is all that matters.

There’s no doubt that walking provides many of the same health benefits as running. But if you want to lose weight, running may be a better bet since running burns about 2.5 times more calories than walking. A study published in the Journal of Obesity in 2012 found that runners had higher levels of the hormone peptide YY, which is known to suppress hunger.

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