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Can Running Help You Succeed in Crunch Time?

MartinEric / flickr

The ability to slow down and speed up your ticker—at will—can help you better handle sticky situations, from the boardroom to the basketball court. And according to new research published in the American Journal of Public Health, running improves this nervous-system control.

The study of 149 healthy young men concluded that 12 weeks of aerobic exercise improved subject’s heart regulation capabilities.

In general, the training lowered men’s resting heart rates—a huge indicator of overall heart health and conditioning—while improving their measure of heart-rate variability, the heart’s ability to speed up or slow down in response to demands. Interestingly, weightlifting had no effect whatsoever on regulation.

The study also found that the regulatory benefits of aerobic exercise disappeared during long bouts of sedentary lifing. Maybe your high school basketball coach was right: Running more will prepare you to succeed in crunch time.

About The Author

David Schipper – David began writing for CorePerformance.com in 2008, after spending six years at Men's Health magazine digging up the newest scientific research in health, weight loss, nutrition, muscle and cardiovascular fitness.

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Tags: Cardio, Health, Running, Heart Rate, Energy System Development