10 Benefits of Running and Why I Love It So Much 

I’m always striving to find a balance between traveling the world and slowing down to enjoy where I’m at right now. Over the last few years, I’ve realized what brings me the ultimate joy is taking the time to appreciate the present moment rather than traveling week after week in search of the next adventure. This chapter is all about living a more conscious life.

On my mountaintop in Ticino, Switzerland, I feel so lucky to have the gorgeous views of Lake Lugano and the Swiss Alps surrounding me every day. I have everything I need right in front of me. I feel so grateful to call this my home—with fresh mountain air and the beauty of nature, it’s quite literally paradise on Earth. 

If you’ve been following along for a while, you know that I love spending time in nature. Whether going for a walk, hike, or bike ride, keeping active helps me take a moment to appreciate the sights and sounds around me. As of recently, I’m officially in my running era, taking advantage of all the wonderful running trails near me in the Alps!  Running has unlocked a whole new passion for me, and I hope to inspire you to experience the same! Today I’m sharing what I love about running and the top 10 benefits of running for your body and mind. On your mark, get set, run!   

What Are the Benefits of Running? 

Running enhances my life in so many ways, both physically and mentally! Looking at the research around it, I’m not surprised by how many health benefits running has. Pair that with the benefits of cold weather running and being in nature, you’ve got a long list of reasons why you should get outside and give it a try. Of course, always consult your healthcare professional before taking on any new exercise routine.  

Now, what are the top 10 benefits of running?  

Promotes Cardiovascular Health 

Your heart is a muscle after all—it gets a proper workout, too! Running can help you lose weight, reduce cholesterol levels, and lower your blood pressure. This is all beneficial for ultimate heart health. 

Improves Quality of Sleep  

Taking on an activity like running helps boost serotonin, which is involved in the sleep-wake cycle. This can help your brain better metabolize serotonin and regulate sleep. When you have more physical activity during the day, you’ll have an easier time falling and staying asleep!  

Lifts Your Mood  

Have you ever heard of the term “runner’s high?” When you run, serotonin and endorphins are released into your body. These can improve your mood, reduce stress, and calm anxiety with “feel-good chemicals” in your bloodstream. Your mental health will improve with a run that gets you outside with nature!  

Lose and Keep Weight Off  

If your goal is to lose weight, running is a great way to burn extra calories. You’re continuously moving your body with running, so when you stick with a routine, you’ll stay in shape!  

Boosts Your Immune System  

As you run, it works to strengthen your immune system. This is especially true if you’re running outside (and living in Switzerland, the running trails near me reap the benefits of cold weather running during winter by improving circulation and metabolism!).  

Easily Accessible   

No need to purchase a treadmill or sign up for a gym membership! You can run anywhere you like and don’t have to travel far from home to get your run on (I love being able to run wherever I want, no matter where I am in the world!).  

High-Calorie Burning Activity  

Compared to other forms of exercise, running and jogging have a high-calorie burn per hour. It’s a great way to get fit and healthy, plus the bonus of enjoying nature for a run outside.   

Cultivates Mindfulness 

Next time you go for a run, leave your earbuds and headphones at home. Running allows you to tune in to the present and tap into mental clarity along your route (I always run without music, and it’s a game-changer to feel more connected to nature and yourself!)  

Improves Cognitive Function 

 Because running raises heart rate and blood flow, this means more oxygen to the brain. Fitness can help with cognitive decline by keeping your mind sharp as you stay physically active!  

Adds Years to Your Life  

We know that an active lifestyle promotes a healthy mind and body with any physical activity. When you keep a consistent running habit, your health will continue to reap the benefits of exercise.  

Running is My Love Language 

One of the best things about the running trails near me in Ticino is having them all to myself to explore! I love spending my days in nature, feeling the sun on my face and breathing in the fresh air. A perfect day starts with trail running in the morning and then going for a sunset walk in the evening. There’s nothing better than going for a run and connecting with my surroundings. No people, just the goats, and cows (which sometimes I can’t help but stop and take a break from my run and say hello to them!).  

With running, there’s no schedule. I love the simplicity of being able to run whenever and for as long as I want. It’s also convenient that I don’t have to go somewhere specific for running, like a gym, fitness studio, or park. No treadmills for me—I just open my back door and start running. There’s no noise (except for maybe the occasional cow or goat) as I run in silence without listening to music or anything to distract me from my run.  

Beyond the top 10 benefits of running, the most important thing is that you enjoy doing it. Why spend your time doing something you don’t love? Running brings me happiness, and I’ll keep running as long as it does.  

Want to stay updated on my travel and running adventures? Follow me on Instagram for a mix of travel tips, mindfulness, and slow living.   

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