Is Too Much Running Bad For You?

Finally, a study supporting all of us lazy people.  Running is bad!  Well…..not really.

Too much rigorous exercise is bad for your health, a study by British Journal Heart says.  In an article by “The editorial authors reviewed decades’ worth of research on the effects of endurance athletics. They found numerous studies that showed that moderate exercise was good, but excessive exercise was damaging. For instance, in one German study published in European Heart Journal, researchers compared the hearts of 108 chronic marathoners and sedentary people in a control group. Surprisingly, the runners had more coronary plaque buildup, a risk factor for heart disease.”(Active).  A study by Medicine and Science in Sports and Exercise also revealed after a study of more than 52,000 people over 30 years that “Overall, runners had a 19 percent lower death risk than non-runners. However, the health benefits of exercise seemed to diminish among people who ran more than 20 miles a week, more than six days a week, or faster than eight miles an hour.”(Active).  This is a very strong demonstration that too much running or working out can be bad for your health and your heart.  The study shows that the sweet spot for running is 5-19 miles a week, at a pace of 6-7mph over 3 or 4 sessions a week.  These runners received the greatest benefit and least repercussions from their running.

Your body is good at burning stress and fat that fuels you for your workout, but with this comes a price.  Like burning wood, burning fat and sugar creates a “smoke” inside of your body.  This smoke can build up and cling to cholesterol in your body and begin to cause problems (Active).  James O’Keefe, MD, Director of Preventative Cardiology at the Saint Luke’s Mid America Heart Institute in Kansas City, has stated “Your body is designed to deal with oxidative stress that comes from exercise for the first hour, but prolonged intense exercise causes excessive oxidative stress, which basically burns through the antioxidants in your system and predisposes you to problems.”

This also doesn’t mean that your should stop working out and running altogether.  Like anything else in life, exercise is best done in moderation; pushing yourself every now and then is good (Active).  Personally, I feel it builds a little character and grit.  Just, when you feel your workouts taking it a little too far, sometimes it’s best to call it quits.



6 thoughts on “Is Too Much Running Bad For You?

  1. tkm5196 Post author

    Finally, someone who doesn’t like running as much as me! I also suffer from shin splints, they are the worst! Sometimes I do run, but it is never very far! I try to make up for it by lifting extra hard! Thanks for the comment!

  2. tkm5196 Post author

    Honestly, I hate running, but I force myself to do it! I cannot speak for the hip or knee pains, but I sometimes find that after running my lower back locks up and gets very stiff, have you ever had that as a result before? Love your enthusiasm!

  3. tkm5196 Post author

    I have also read that walking can be great for your health! Part of the reason I like Penn State is because of all the walking around campus. I must ask, do you think jogging would have the same affect as running, walking, or somewhere in the middle? Thanks for your comment!

  4. Victoria Atkinson Scott

    Great link about endorphins:

    According to wikipedia, endorphins are “group of hormones secreted within the brain and nervous system and having a number of physiological functions. They are peptides that activate the body’s opiate receptors, causing an analgesic effect”

    I have heard fast walking or a quick brisk walk is great for you as well. The benefits of a fast pace walk are better for your muscles and aren’t so hard on your body.

  5. Annamarie Rose Sassi

    This article is very relatable, I really enjoy running. I find time every day to go for a jog, and usually I will run around six miles. It sounds crazy, but once I got myself into the habit of doing so a couple years ago, it would be impossible to just stop it all together. In relation to the study you analyzed, I’ve personally experienced some adverse effects that long distance running has had on my body. Sometimes the joins in my hips, knees cramp up and I’ll have random spikes of pain. I’ve never really considered the more serious injuries that running can have on the body such as heart problems. However, this article did not minimize my love for running! For me, the positives still outweigh the possible negatives.

  6. Brooke Kaiden

    I like to go to the gym whenever I can because I believe that exercise is the key to a healthy life and it keeps me from sitting in my bed all day watching Netflix and eating fattening food. I have heard in the past that running isn’t the best exercise one can do. I tend not to run because it hurts my knees, but sometimes I like the feeling of running. I also have heard that fast walking is better for you than running. I don’t fast walk that much because I get really bad shin splints and I look like a complete fool when I do that. It is interesting that running isn’t that good for you because our intuition would think the opposite. I agree with you that just running isn’t the best type of exercise for someone doesn’t mean they should stop, they should just focus on other types of exercises.

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