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Mizuno Asks. What If Everybody Ran?

The Potential Impact of a National Running Movement

This post is sponsored by Mizuno. I was provided Mizuno products in exchange for sharing What If Everybody Ran?  

So, what do you think the impact of a national running movement would be on communities and possibly the country? Mizuno commissioned a statistical analysis from the University of North Carolina’s Kenan-Flagler Business School to explore the question, What if everybody ran?

As I may have mentioned a time or 2 I’m a research and stats kind of person. I like to analyze data and see where it takes me. When I was asked to share Mizuno’s research results I thought research, statistics and running? Of course I said yes.

To give you a frame of reference, the US population is currently around 320 million and 300 million of those are considered old enough (5 and older) to run and create regular exercise habits. Of the 300 million, 30 million Americans run more than 50 times per year.

We believe running is powerful. ~Mizuno

Research Highlights:


  • 37% more smiles in the United States
  • 163,607 (18.7%) fewer divorces annually
  • 29.3 happier marriages
  • in one year, Americans would spend 7 billion more hours outdoors
  • 27 million more sunrises seen per week


  • national productivity lost from sick days could be reduced by 50%
  • $25.3 billion increase in the Gross Domestic Product


  • $143 billion savings in health care costs
  • 5 million fewer hospital visits annually
  • 116,000 fewer hip replacements annually
  • 25% more breaths of fresh air taken
  • the non-running population could drop 1.9 billion pounds in a year
  • 200 million inches lost from American waistlines
  • 48.1 million fewer cigarettes smoked daily
  • increase average life expectancy of 6.2 years in men and 5.6 years in women
  • 32% better dreams and 23% less tossing and turning


  • a total of 1.62 billion more birthday cakes
  • 63 million happier dogs
  • 135 million fewer hours spent watching TV
  • 14 billion fewer hours spent online
  • 173 million new running apps downloaded
  • 135 million more road race entries
  • 135 million more bananas eaten
  • 135 million more bagels eaten
  • 60 million more pounds of pasta cooked
  • $4 billion increase in donations made to charitable organizations

Other Interesting Stats:

  • people who exercise during the workday were 23% more productive
  • exercise can reduce anger rates by 83%
  • current waist size of men and women in the U.S. is 38.5 inches
  • there are 34.1 million daily smokers
  • daily smokers smoke, on average, 15.1 cigarettes per day

Thirty minutes a week. 52 weeks a year. Is all it would take. If everybody ran the world would be a better place.

Who have you inspired to start running? Are you surprised by any of the statistics? What other ways do you think communities and the nation would be impacted by a national running movement?



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  1. Love this campaign. Programs like Girls On The Run are making our girls better leaders and healthier. What if we did the same for boys. Older kids. Adults. We’d all be so much happier and healthier! Thanks for sharing!

  2. Great post Jill, I am not an avid runner, but there is NO greater feeling than finishing up an outdoor run, so I can see why the numbers prove my feelings true!

  3. Great post! I never really thought about it before, and it’s a great concept. But I think I’d rather not everyone run, in the same aspect that not everyone should dance or play basketball.. I love having a great variety of people in the world. But I do think everyone should spend that 30 min 52 weeks a year doing high cardio of some sort to keep fit, and all the better if running is the sport of choice:)

  4. thats got a be a typo with only 135 more bagels eaten? I’m assuming its supposed to be million. All the stats are fascinating, what I find the most intriguing is the increase in charitable donations. I chalk this up to all our team in training and other organizations out there spreading the word. Great job!

  5. What a great research project. I still consider myself new to running. I wish I could get more of my loved ones to run with me. I may have to share this post with them. 😉


  6. I like the number of happier dogs. But my dog doesn’t run. 😛

  7. What a wonderful post! i love all the statistics! Great job as always!

  8. I love this post and all the statistics – very cool reading through the numbers!!

  9. Those are some pretty amazing statistics! Thanks for sharing. =)

  10. I love to see the impact on relationships. I am a numbers girl so I loved seeing this and especially the number of increased smiles!! 🙂

  11. I’m a stats girl too and love these numbers! lol. Running has been such an important part of my life and how I’ve dealt with the hard experiences in my life. And I owe it all to my dad who on my first kindergarten field day told me right before I ran the 50m race (I know, cute…lol) “no matter what place you end, you run as fast as you can little girl… and have fun with it!”. That one moment sprung my love for track and field and was my happy place all the way through college. Now running (not competitively) has continued to fueled that love for movement and fitness.

  12. As a fellow stats berg myself, I LOVE this post! My favorites are 50% less sick days, 23% more productivity during the work day, and the increase in life expectancy – 6.2 years in men and 5.6 years in women. WOW!

  13. This really goes to show you how exercise does not only have a positive impact on your body, but also on your mind. The mental/emotional statistics definitely intrigued me the most!

  14. i definitely agree and love this. Even walking, it all counts. Move! ya know? Love that mission!

  15. This is SUCH a cool post Jill! WOW! You continue to amaze me! Those facts are incredible! I love this so much, and I bet you will inspire a handful of people to run with this post alone! So So cool!

    I think you know my running story, but It was Paula Radcliffe who inspired me to want to run for more than just fun/being healthy. I watched her run by me in the marathon once, and right then and there I decided I wanted to be the best. I have done everything I can ever since (well other than a few blips :P)

    I think the impact would be incredible, they would actually have to plow/salt the sidewalks as otherwise there would be no room for cars on the road when it snows 😛

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