Want to live longer? Add this easy habit to your daily routine
There’s a simple way to increase your longevity, and it only takes a couple of minutes a day
Jogging just seven minutes a day can help you live longer
Running can also prevent strokes and other cardiovascular issues
Consider listening to music, scheduling your runs, and giving yourself little rewards if you need help getting motivated
Everyone wants to live longer, happier, and healthier lives. But which headlines should you pay attention to? The ones that tell you to eat less butter or the ones that ask you to choose butter instead of margarine or oil? The screaming advertisements encouraging you to invest in one more workout machine or the picture of fat-burning freeze treatments? It sometimes feels impossible to know who to trust.
Luckily for you, there are new, scientific study-based conclusions that will tell you exactly what to add to your daily routine to drastically decrease your risk of stroke and increase your lifespan. And, best of all, it doesn’t cost a cent.
What is the magic cure?
Magic might be a strong word — it does still require a little bit of work from you, after all — but the results of a recent study sure make this one lifestyle change sound pretty magical. A recent study published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology suggests that running seven minutes a day could add years to your life and decrease your risk of having a stroke. With just seven minutes, you could change your life.
This revolutionary study took 15 years and focused on over 55,000 adults, so it was not a small or rushed undertaking. Over the course of the study, researchers determined that even people who ran for short periods of time (five to ten minutes a day) at relatively slow speeds (under six miles an hour) were significantly less likely to suffer untimely deaths, especially from cardiovascular causes.
The study also determined that people who ran under one hour a week saw the same heart and mortality-related benefits as did people who ran over three hours each week. Ultimately, even a little bit of time spent getting that heart pumping can add healthy years to your life.
How can you motivate yourself to run?
Still not convinced? Consider trying some of these self-motivating tools to help get you in the running spirit.
Tip #1: Music
Tip #2: Schedule
Tip #3: Reward
First, try getting yourself pumped up by listening to your favorite jams. Play those songs that you can’t help but move to and see if that gets you out the door any faster. Don’t worry about what the neighbors will say, dance all the way down the street. Dance-jogging counts, right?
If music alone isn’t enough to get you going, block out time for running in your daily schedule, just like you would an important meeting or parent-teacher conference. Once you’ve committed to putting your run in writing, you’ll be much less likely to skip out. And I promise a quick little jog will be much better than conferences.
Don’t worry about what the neighbors will say, dance all the way down the street.
Even with music and a strict schedule, you might need one more little push to get into your workout clothes and out the door. Consider giving yourself a little treat at the end, like a special after-work coffee or short Netflix show before you get dinner started.
Whatever you do to get yourself moving, it’s a proven fact: Jogging a little bit each day will help you live a healthier, longer life. So get out there and get to it!
A deeper dive — Related reading from the 101
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