The sport of running is synonymous with expensive footwear, men in tight Lycra and, of course, frequent injury. However, a recent study provides some solace for runners as they hobble around–they may be getting smarter! The study, entitled “Physical exercise increases adult hippocampal neurogenesis in male rats provided it is aerobic and sustained“, demonstrates the advantages of running over high-intensity interval training (HIT) in stimulating brain cell growth.
The Tribune’s science correspondent, Stig Broodorfshwen, provided this insightful commentary on the research:
This paper is a landmark. It had been thought that HIT would lead to more benefits than prolonged aerobic exercise, yet the results clearly refute this notion. Based on these findings I would recommend that if you own a rat, bring it with you when running or jogging, maybe by using some sort of rat-leash. Alternatively, make sure that it runs regularly on a wheel, without stopping to perform tabata or other high-intensity workout. After a few months the rat might surprise you by performing some rudimentary household tasks or even learning simple phrases such as “cheese please”. Excitingly, the results could be extrapolated to apply beyond just rats; similar effects may be seen in mice, hamsters, gerbils and possibly even guinea pigs”
In recognition of this scientific milestone The Turunn Tribune will be sponsoring a unique running event, we hope to see you there! Stay tuned, an announcement will follow soon!