When people think about the benefits of running, things like a more efficient cardiovascular system, increased lung capacity and stronger muscles and bones are often what comes to mind – not to mention a lean, muscled figure. And runners who exercise regularly do often enjoy these kinds of health benefits.
However, it’s not just your heart or lungs or muscles that benefit from regular running. As an added bonus, women especially will be delighted to know that running can also help improve their skin.
The Skin Will Detoxify Itself More Efficiently
If you run frequently, you probably have noticed a “post-workout glow” to your skin when you get home. There are biological reasons for this. One of the reasons that running benefits in the skin is through increasing and improving circulation. This increased circulation means that more nutrients are delivered to the skin cells as well as higher levels of oxygen. It also means that the skin is able to detoxify itself more efficiently. Better circulation can also increase the rate at which skin cells reproduce and can also help to clear the blockage of pores, which in the long run can also help with conditions like acne.
It’ll Push Out Dirt, Oil And Other Debris Out Of The Pores
Okay, most women don’t like having to sweat even when they’re working out – but the good news is that this sweat is actually great for skin as well. Sweat is able to de-clog pores, pushing out dirt, oil and other debris out of the pores so that the skin is clear and cleansed. Also, when women work out, they tend to drink more water and this hydration is also great for skin health.
Hormones And Stress Would Be Regulated
Hormones can also be a culprit when it comes to keeping the skin clear and women dealing with the monthly fluctuations of progesterone and estrogen can feel frustrated at breakouts of acne that correlate with the menstruation. Regular exercise, such as running, however, can help to regulate hormones and prevent them from causing skin eruptions. Closely linked to hormonal regulation is the regulation of stress, which can have a negative impact on skin health as well. Many skin conditions are made worse when anxiety and stress levels are not adequately controlled; exercise, however, can release endorphins which provide natural stress relief.
A Few Exceptions to the Rule
There are a few exceptions to the rule of running and skin benefits, however. For those with chronic skin problems such as eczema or psoriasis, the sweat that exercise produces can dry out irritated areas of skin and can cause stinging or discomfort. People with these conditions should talk to their doctor about how to protect their skin during exercise as well as which exercises are most appropriate for a given condition.
Two Great Running Apps To Try
For people who are wanting to take advantage of all the health benefits of running — including benefits to the skin — running apps are a great way to go. And the good news is that there are a wide variety of apps to choose from, including:
- RunKeeper. This iOS- or Android-compatible app is attractive because it contains plans designed by top coaches and also allows you to download your information onto social media sites so that you can track against your running buddies.
- MapMyRun. For runners who have regular routes or want to create new ones, this mapping app is a great tool as it allows you to follow a “breadcrumb” trail onscreen and is perfect for running in a new city or other unfamiliar territory. This app is iOS- or Android-compatible.
In short, running is not just great for your overall health but can give you the gift of beautiful, glowing skin as well. And the apps listed above can help you with your running goals whether you are just beginning or are an experienced and seasoned runner.