Pounding the pavement. Stretching out the heart muscle. Working in a quick run. However you refer to jogging, researchers are united on one simple principle – it works.
Regular jogging increases the life expectancy of men by 6.2 years and women by 5.6 years, according to a long-running study from the Copenhagen City Heart study. One to two-and-a-half hours of jogging per week at a slow or average pace delivers optimum benefits for longevity, the study said.
The first data for the Copenhagen City Heart study was collected between 1976 and 1978, the second from 1981 to 1983, the third from 1991 to 1994 and the fourth from 2001 to 2003. Ages of the study participants ranged from 20 to 93.
For the sub-study portion of the research, the mortality of 1,116 male joggers and 762 female joggers was compared to the non-joggers in the main study population. All participants were asked to answer questions about the amount of time they spent jogging each week and to rate their own perceptions of pace. This helped researchers reach their recommendation for the ideal frequency of jogging.
Results show that in the follow-up period of the study involving a maximum of 35 years, 10,158 deaths were registered among the non-joggers and 122 deaths among the joggers. Analysis showed that risk of death was reduced by 44 percent for male joggers and 44 percent for female joggers.
Furthermore the data showed jogging produced an age-adjusted survival benefit of 6.2 years in men and 5.6 years in women.
keep it simple
Investigators found that more than one to two-and-a-half hours a week of jogging – especially if performed at a higher-than-average pace, could actually work against joggers and produce some negative health effects. A slow or average pace helped keep the cardiovascular impact at optimal levels.