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Some people swear that they will never run a day in their lives–they hate the feeling of pounding the pavement and having sweat drip from their brow. But you might want to try it since you might actually like it when you find out that it could add up to six additional years to your life.

According to researchers involved in the long-term Copanhagen City Heart Study jogging had several health benefits that contribute to increased life expectancy including oxygen uptake, insulin sensitivity, improved heart function, immune functioning, psychological functioning, and bone density. And rather than running at an intense pace, the researchers say that jogging at a slow pace for one to two and a half hours weekly provided the most significant benefits.

The reseachers obtained their results by analyzing the mortality rates of joggers and non-joggers who took part in the Copanhagen City Heart Study that began in 1976 and was composed of 20,000 individuals ages 20 to 93. The researchers asked 1,116 male joggers and 762 female joggers about their jogging routine, including how fast and how long they jogged weekly. Overall, they found that 10,158 non-joggers died during the 35-year time period and 122 joggers died. Male joggers can extend their lives up to 6.2 years by jogging and female joggers can extend their lives by 5.6 years. So next time you think twice about lacing up your tennis shoes–remember the health benefits and get going!

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