The Ideal Jogging Dose for a Long Life: A Prospective Study

by Kate Young, Registered Physiotherapist

Running and walking are great ways to stay in shape, but is there an ideal frequency and intensity to strive towards?  While you may think the goal is to run more often, more intensely, and for greater distances, research indicates otherwise.

Take a light jog 2 to 3 times a week
Take a light jog 2-3 times a week

The Copenhagen City Heart Study (2015) has recently released data that suggests a U-shaped association between mortality rates (all-cause) and amount of jogging as calibrated by pace (how fast), quantity (how long), and frequency (how often).

The lowest mortality rates were found in light joggers (1-2.5 hours/week), with an optimal frequency of 2 to 3 times per week and the optimal pace being slow. Moderate joggers had a significantly higher mortality rate compared with light joggers, but it was still lower than that of sedentary non-joggers. Strenuous joggers had a mortality rate that was not statistically different from that of sedentary non-joggers.

What does all of this mean? A leisurely jog 2-3 times a week is a good strategy!

Find the full study here.

(Should You) Run for Your Life?