Running 8 Miles A Day: Is It Too Hard On The Body?
There’s no better feeling than putting on your headphones, selecting your favorite playlist or podcast, and heading out for a nice, stress-relieving run.
Running regularly has some tremendous benefits for the body, such as reducing stress, and reducing the risk of developing heart disease and even cancer!
However, running 8 miles a day is QUITE the distance, and there are some risks involved with running so much every single day.
8 miles (12.87 kilometers) is not a race-specific distance. Nevertheless, experienced runners often include it in their training plans.
This article is going to discuss the good, the bad, and the ugly, of running 8 miles a day!
Is 8 Miles a Long Run?
When preparing for a 5K or a 10K, an 8-mile run is considered adequate.
However, that will not be enough if you are training for a half marathon or marathon.
Is Running 8 Miles a Day a Lot?
8 miles a day is TOO MUCH for a BEGINNER. It is not recommended even for experienced runners.
Running the same distance every day doesn’t improve your running skills.
It is essential to rest at least one day a week and have VARIETY in your training plan. This reduces the risk of injury and overtraining.
If you want to progress, doing various workouts is better.
What Is a Good Time For an Eight-Mile Run?
Beginning runners average about one hour and thirty minutes for an 8-mile run. That means they run at an average pace of 11:20 minutes/mile.
For beginners, running 8 miles continuously without stopping might be difficult. They should combine running with walking segments.
It takes an intermediate runner about one hour to run 8 miles. The pace is roughly 7:50 minutes/mile.
Multiple factors will influence the result, including age, sex, fitness level, experience, weather, and terrain.
Cons And Risks Of Running 8 Miles A Day
There are some amazing benefits of running every day.
However, 8 miles is a very long distance to complete every day, and despite the benefits, there are some DRAWBACKS and RISKS of running this distance without a break.
Increased Risk Of Injury
If you’re not a regular runner, trying to complete 8 miles a day without a build-up period can lead to unwanted injury. So don’t hurry!
Even if you are a regular runner, running 8 miles every day can make you susceptible to overuse injuries such as the runner’s knee, Achilles issues, shin splints, and even fractures.
If you aren’t taking any rest days, then your body doesn’t have time to RECOVER, which causes more stress on your body and muscles.
Pushing yourself too hard to run 8 miles a day could lead to BURNOUT.
This is when the negatives of running start to outweigh the positives because your body is taking on too much.
Signs of this include POOR sleep, reduced motivation, feeling tired and lethargic all the time, and not enjoying your runs.
Lack Of Progress
Jogging the same route, and the same distance, every day can STAGNATE your performance.
You should include a combination of shorter and longer distances and different types of running workouts in your training plan.
Importance Of Rest Days
While running 8 miles a day sounds impressive, the need for rest days when running these distances is crucial.
This is because your body’s muscles need time to recover from any damage that’s occurred during workouts. This rest period will also allow your muscles to GROW.
We must also remember, that any exercise uses our body’s energy, usually in the form of carbohydrates and fluids.
Rest days also help the body replenish energy stores, ready to take on the next training day.
A rest day is normally a period of 24 hours. Studies have shown that it takes the body this amount of time to replenish the muscle’s store of carbohydrates, which is what we use for energy.
While it only takes a few hours to replenish our fluids, health professionals will always recommend at least 24-hour rest periods between training the same muscle group.
How Many Calories Does Running 8 Miles Burn?
Your age, weight, fitness level, pace, terrain, and temperature all AFFECT how many calories you burn while running eight miles.
When you are heavier, you burn more calories. Distance is the same, but you must work harder to carry extra weight.
- For example, when you weigh 200 lbs (90 kg), you burn around 1250 calories for an 8-mile run.
- When you weigh 180 lbs (82 kg), you burn around 1120 calories for the same distance.
Pros And Benefits of Running
All health experts recommend taking part in some form of exercise EVERY day. Running not only changes your body but also improves your mental health.
1. Lowers Anxiety And Depression
Running has been shown to help deal with the feelings associated with anxiety and depression.
This is because running can help improve your concentration and focus, which improves your cognitive function overall.
This helps to push away feelings of anxiety and depression.
2. Improved Sleep
Moderate to vigorous exercise has been known to help the sleep quality of adults. As we are referring to daily 8-mile runs, these are considered vigorous.
Engaging in this, daily, can increase slow-wave sleep as you rest. This is a deeper sleep that allows your body and brain to rejuvenate properly as you sleep.
This in turn will also add to your improved cognitive functions, as good sleep aids with that also.
3. Lowered Risk Of Heart Disease
Running has the same effect on your heart, as lifting weights has on your muscles.
The more you run, the more you work out your heart, making it STRONGER.
When you engage in regular running, over time, your heart’s walls will strengthen, increasing its efficiency.
Studies have therefore shown that regular runners have less of a chance of developing heart disease.
Their risk of developing it reduces significantly by 35 to 55%.
This is because running, not only strengthens your heart, it also prevents the accumulation of blood clots in the arteries and blood vessels.
It encourages healthy blood flow, healthy blood pressure, as well as healthy cholesterol levels.
4. Increased Maximum Oxygen Uptake
As regular runners have stronger hearts, this means they are likely to have a slower resting heart rate and a higher INTAKE of oxygen around the body.
This means that the heart can handle pumping more blood around the body per beat.
5. Healthy Weight Management
Engaging in regular running is a great way to maintain your weight.
Running 8 miles can burn a lot of calories, and those who would like to lose a few pounds are recommended to try running.
It is important to start slowly and set out a schedule that works for you.
If you are already sprinting 8 miles a day, then your fitness levels are at their peak, meaning you are less likely to experience weight issues.
6. High Fitness Levels
Running 8 miles a day equates to around 40 to 56 miles a week, and this is the typical mileage that intermediate runners will aim to complete when they are training for a marathon.
To conclude, while running 8 miles every day may sound impressive and admirable, it does make the body susceptible to injuries.
Including rest days in between your running days is CRUCIAL in order for the body and muscles to recover.
When you run 8 miles effortlessly, your fitness has been elevated to the next level. If you continue training, you may be able to run a half marathon or even one of those marathons on your bucket list!