There are many benefits of jogging for 20 minutes every day – some more notable than others. But what they all have in common is how they positively impact our overall health.
Jogging is a simple, natural, and highly beneficial activity. It’s good for the mind, strengthens the lower body, and burns plenty of calories.
Plus, jogging is simple to start with, easy to learn, and effortless to maintain as a habit. You don’t need special equipment. All you have to do is put on a pair of comfortable shoes, dress up in something sporty, and head out the door. If the weather outside is bad, you can jog on a treadmill at home or in the local gym. While not as peaceful or natural, it’s still an acceptable alternative and great for your health.
Read on and discover six convincing reasons why YOU should be reaping the benefits of a 20-minute daily jog. I might even have you persuaded?
Six Incredible Health Benefits of Jogging for 20 Minutes Every Day
1. It Allows You to Lose Weight
One of jogging’s most notable benefits – and a reason why many people do it – is weight loss. The activity burns calories, which can put you in the calorie deficit needed for fat loss (1, 2). For instance, a simple 20-minute jog can burn as many as 150 to 200 calories. By jogging daily, you could burn an extra 1,000 or more calories per week.
Weight loss itself is an admirable goal, not just because it makes us look better. Losing excess body fat improves our energy levels, makes us feel better, promotes physical activity, and reduces the risk of many diseases.
2. It Improves Bone Mineral Density
Bone mineral density is the measure of bone strength and resilience. The greater it is, the stronger our bones are and the lower the risk of fractures is. Plus, higher bone mineral density reduces the risk of osteoporosis later in life.
This benefit might not seem all that important, especially if you’re relatively young (3). But as we get older, we tend to lose bone mineral density, which weakens our bones and puts us at an increased risk of aches and injuries.
3. It Strengthens Your Lower Body Musculature
When most people decide to build some strength, they typically go for the apparent muscles: the back, chest, and arms. While strengthening these muscles is quite beneficial, lower body strength is equally as (if not more) important.
A strong lower body makes you more functional, allows you to carry everyday tasks more easily, and reduces your risk of many injuries. Plus, your lower body is the foundation that supports your athleticism and overall physical ability.
Jogging for as little as twenty minutes per day is quite beneficial for your health and athleticism because it strengthens the major muscles in your lower body. Specifically, it works your quadriceps, hamstrings, glutes, and calves.
4. It’s Great For Your Cardiovascular System
Few people ever think about their cardiovascular system while they are young, but doing so is essential for good health as we get older. Heart-related disease is the number one reason for deaths in today’s world (4). This includes several things, such as:
- Cardiovascular disease
- High blood pressure
- Heart attacks
The great news is, maintaining our cardiovascular health is simpler than most people imagine. Apart from healthier nutrition and reduced intake of transfats, daily jogging for twenty minutes can strengthen the heart and significantly reduce the risk of early death (5).
5. It Clears Your Head And Improves Mental Health
If you’ve ever gone for a morning jog, you understand how deeply meditative and relaxing the experience is. There are no deadlines, places to be, or things to do. It’s you, the ground beneath you, and the scenery. You get to move your body, flood your body with endorphins, and fill your lungs with fresh air. It’s cool, soothing, and fulfilling.
You have time to think about things, see things from a new perspective, and find solutions to nagging issues.
By the time your finish the run, you feel happy, relaxed, and clear-headed.
The best part is, jogging often has this effect on you, regardless of when you run – be it in the morning, afternoon, or evening (6).
6. It Strengthens Your Immune System
Your immune system is your body’s defense against invaders such as viruses and bacteria. Your immunity also works internally to prevent disease-causing changes, such as cancer cell formation.
Each day, your immunity works tirelessly to keep you safe, healthy, and feeling good.
The good news is, we can reward our immunity and keep it strong in many ways. For instance, good sleep, healthy nutrition, and adequate hydration are all vital tactics.
Regular physical exercise also appears to strengthen our immunity (7). For instance, research shows that regular exercise increases the population of specific defensive cells that eradicate external invaders and keep us healthy. And the best part is, as little as twenty minutes of daily jogging can deliver these benefits.
Jogging is among the simplest, most relaxing, and most beneficial ways to exercise. It’s great because it delivers many health benefits, elevates our fitness, and doesn’t put much stress on the body.
Plus, preparing for a jog session is easier and takes almost no motivation. Instead of feeling anxious or having to muster enough energy, jogging is often the easy and pleasurable habit that makes us feel good.
Before you go:
Be sure to visit my cardio exercise archive – LOADED with fitness tips, hacks, and workout routines that actually bring results!
See you there!
Other Helpful Resources
- When Does Cardio Start Burning Muscle? Science, Tips, and Hacks
- Slow Jogging vs. Fast Walking: The Beginners ABC
- What Does Cardio do For Your Body? The Beginner’s ABC to Cardio
- My Cardio Doesn’t Work: 3 Reasons to Why You Are Not Getting Results!
- What is an Agility Ladder? The Ultimate Guide to the World of Agility Ladders
- HIIT vs LISS: What is The Best Type of Cardio For me?
- Wilkin LD, Cheryl A, Haddock BL. Energy expenditure comparison between walking and running in average fitness individuals. J Strength Cond Res. 2012 Apr;26(4):1039-44. doi: 10.1519/JSC.0b013e31822e592c. PMID: 22446673.
- Strasser B, Spreitzer A, Haber P. Fat loss depends on energy deficit only, independently of the method for weight loss. Ann Nutr Metab. 2007;51(5):428-32. doi: 10.1159/000111162. Epub 2007 Nov 20. PMID: 18025815.
- Mussolino ME, Looker AC, Orwoll ES. Jogging and bone mineral density in men: results from NHANES III. Am J Public Health. 2001;91(7):1056-1059. doi:10.2105/ajph.91.7.1056
- The top 10 causes of death (Source: WHO)
- Lee DC, Pate RR, Lavie CJ, Sui X, Church TS, Blair SN. Leisure-time running reduces all-cause and cardiovascular mortality risk [published correction appears in J Am Coll Cardiol. 2014 Oct 7;64(14):1537]. J Am Coll Cardiol. 2014;64(5):472-481. doi:10.1016/j.jacc.2014.04.058
- Sharma A, Madaan V, Petty FD. Exercise for mental health. Prim Care Companion J Clin Psychiatry. 2006;8(2):106. doi:10.4088/pcc.v08n0208a
- Nieman DC, Wentz LM. The compelling link between physical activity and the body’s defense system. J Sport Health Sci. 2019;8(3):201-217. doi:10.1016/j.jshs.2018.09.009