FEEL FITTER AND HAPPIER IMMEDIATELY-
To Run: Runners are happier, more positive and have higher self-esteem, according to a study by Glasgow Caledonian University of more than 8,000 pavement pounders, who scored 4.4 on the Oxford Happiness Scale. The average score is 4. Another study found that the mental health benefits of running were almost instantaneous.
IMPROVE YOUR MEMORY
To Run: Always forgetting where you left your car keys? Start running instead, because regular aerobic exercise increases the size of your hippocampus, an area of the brain responsible for memory and learning, according to a study from the University of British Columbia. The research found that weight training doesn’t have the same beneficial brain effect.
SHARPEN UP YOUR BRAIN
To Run: The brains of runners have better-connected neural pathways essential for higher-level cognitive functions than sedentary people, according to the University of Arizona. Areas that worked especially well were those involved in working memory, multitasking, attention, decision-making and spatial and visual awareness.