How Does Walking or Running Help Women?

How Does Walking or Running Help Women?

Dr.Neeraj Mehta profile Authored by Dr.Neeraj Mehta on 28 Jan 2016 - 14:09.


Regular (Aerobic and Anaerobic) exercises are a powerful and work like a medicine in mitigating virtually all the negative changes, women experience at midlife and beyond. According to a study, the risk of dying from a cardiovascular disease or stroke was 45 percent less in individuals who incorporated running as a form of physical activity. 

Human Body’s Response to Running and Aerobic Exercises:

Regulates heart beat:When you run, the cardiovascular system regulates the heart rate effectively distributing the  blood in the vascular circuit. This maintains blood pressure and enhances the metabolic process.

Increases cardiovascular endurance and muscle endurance : Regular brisk walking or running as a routine helps enhance the overall health and lifestyle of a woman. Jogging or running at least 3 times for 20 minutes, a week has several health benefits. High impact aerobic / fast running can cause injuries, so its important to listen to your body before starting any fitness program or a challenging exercise. An interval training in running helps increase cardiovascular endurance and muscle endurance.

Aerobic exercise decreases both physical and mental symptoms of PMS (Premenstrual Syndrome): Walking or aerobic exercises will help to decrease the challenges during Menopause and Per- menopause, relieves negative symptoms such as anxiety and depression and improves cardiovascular fitness.

Builds and maintain heart and lung capacity and endurance: During pregnancy, brisk walking and low impact aerobic exercises build and maintain heart and lung capacity and endurance. This works best for those women who were previously inactive. Running in general reduces labor pain and other pregnancy associated medical problems.

Works as a stress buster: Brisk walking / running strengthens your heart, keeps your arteries clear, boosts your mood, is one of the best stress busters, and helps you stay active and independent as you age.

Tones the Body: Cardio and strength training exercises provide fat-reducing and muscle-toning effects. The cardio nature of Jogging can help get both these effects by blowing away those calories which add to your weight in the form of fat. Jogging engages quadriceps, hamstrings, calves and gluteal muscles which particularly targets the legs and butt. The best part about jogging is, that those muscles involved while running, will help you gain that toned look, which is so important to get a shapely body, every woman craves for. 

Run-Walk Strategy for a Runner (beginner):

If you are a beginner runner, follow the Run-walk strategy. It not only helps you to run down into small increments, which makes longer runs more manageable, it also allows you to physically slow down and regroup during the walking intervals.

Run for a few minutes and walk the double time, like if you run for 5 minutes, slow down and walk for 10 minutes and so on. This helps you gather your breath and give your body time to adjust, as you are a beginner runner.


Caution must be followed in what ever you do and so, while doing aerobic exercises or running or brisk walking. Some of the precautions are:

  • Often after running for a long duration, the body gets tired and we tend to drag one foot,  which may lead to knee injury. So make sure you don’t run to the point of breathlessness or get overheated.
  • Find a comfortable balance between the movements. It is necessary to understand the biomechanics of your body. When you run or jog on any surface or treadmill, you try to run with the balance of your foot lateral edge, which will not put strain on the ligaments of your knees.   
  • Avoid fast runs that have serious risks of falling or any other abdominal extreme contraction which is not at all good for fetus during pregnancy.

Physiological and physical changes:

Basic physiological and physical changes in a woman's body, resulting from running or brisk walking are:

  • Reduced body fat content
  • Increased blood supply to muscles
  • Increased muscle mass (with strength, cardio-conditioning) 
  • Reduced serum lipids (cholesterol and triglycerides) from blood
  • Reduced resting heart rate.
  • The lungs increased maximal oxygen uptake.
  • Increased blood supply to heart muscle.
  • Increased glucose tolerance.
  • Reduced strain resulting from psychological stress.
  • Reduced risk of arteriosclerosis.

With umpteen health benefits, would you like to ignore these exercises? Certainly not, so make sure to make at least brisk walking a part of your daily routine to experience those huge health benefits in the long term and as you age. 


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