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Some amazing facts about running

Running is in your DNA. Humans evolved to be runners. Here are some interesting facts to inspire you on your next Bourn To Run cross country event in Cambridgeshire.

The lowdown:

Running is considered the most basic form of exercise because it uses a person's own body, weight, and two legs.

Apparently, you can outrun a horse. Humans can beat almost every other animal on earth over long distances. Because we cool by sweating rather than panting, we can stay cool at speeds and distances that would overheat other animals. Most mammals can sprint faster than humans — having four legs gives them a slight advantage!

The average time for runners to complete a 10K race is between 50 and 70 minutes. The official world records in the 10,000 metres are held by Kenenisa Bekele with 26:17.53 minutes for men and Almaz Ayana from Ethiopia with 29:17.45 minutes for women.

An average 1-hour weight training session burns about 300 calories. A 1-hour run burns about 600. Even if you’re a plodder jogger, you’ll burn at least 10 calories per minute of running. For chocoholics, 30 minutes equals 50 grams of chocolate (approx. half a bar!).

Professional runners have exceptionally consistent strides, generally between 185-200 steps per minute. Try and achieve that on your fit bit!

The foot has 26 bones, 33 joints, 112 ligaments. It takes 200 muscles to make a step when you run. Your feet can produce up to a pint of sweat each day. Yuck!

If you run regularly, you’ve already discovered it: exercise will make you feel better. For men, just 2 1/2 hours of weekly running increases testosterone by 15%. And if you are physically active you have a 60 percent lower risk for Alzheimer’s disease than lazy sit abouts (The Lancet Neurology – Sweden). Even if you just meet the minimum amount of physical activity—(30 minutes, 5 times per week), you’ll live longer.

The treadmill was initially designed for English prisons as a tool for punishment. Recreational running also did not become mainstream until the late 1960s. During the 60s, running for exercise was so unusual that some people were stopped by police (presumably because they thought they were making a run for it).

Because men's hearts are 20–25% larger than women's, especially the left ventricle, men can run longer and more easily than women. However, women are officially better runners. New research concludes that women are 18.61% better than men at running with a controlled and consistent pace when comparing results for the first and the last part of the marathon.

The most common running injury is "runner's knee," or patellofemoral pain syndrome (PFPS), which is irritation of the cartilage on the underside of the kneecap.

Runners who wear red are more likely to win a race. This is because the colour red exudes dominance and is also seen as threatening to fellow competitors.

Over 1 billion pairs of running shoes are sold worldwide each year. Runners replace their running shoes approximately every 300–500 miles. If a person wears their running shoes for every-day use, the shoes will last only around 200 miles.

Bourn To Run is now in its tenth year and has attracted hundreds and hundreds of runners and donated thousands of pounds to good causes. Why not sign up today?