The idea that running can improve your mood and protect your mental health is something that many runners have accepted as fact for a long time, simply based on their own experience.
But there has also been a lot of research that backs this up, which we discovered more about previously when we spoke to Dr Brendon Stubbs from the Institute of Psychiatry, Psychology and Neuroscience at King’s College London about how running can improve your mental health.
Now, new research into the area by Asics – overseen by Stubbs – has thrown up some exciting findings, in the form of measurable improvements in brain activity after just 20 minutes of exercise. These include an improvement of up to 29% in people’s ability to deal with stress, and an increase in relaxation levels of up to 18%. People also got sharper, with an increase in brain processing speed of up to 26% and an improvement in memory of up to 21%, while they were also up to 28% less prone to making rash decisions.
Perhaps the stat that stood out the most to us in these incredibly frustrating times was that 20 minutes of running resulted in a drop of up to 135% in negative emotions like frustration.
It all sounds amazing and, we assume, makes you want to go out for a run right now. But before you do here’s Stubbs with more information about the research and why it’s so exciting.