What if everybody ran?

What if Everybody Ran InfographicDo you ever think about what the world would be like if everybody ran? I’ll admit, there are some people I just can’t picture running (hi mom!). But Mizuno apparently has a bigger imagination than I do, or at least a more optimistic one. The company recently decided to take a look into what the world would look like if everyone did, in fact, run.

Working with a team from the University of North Carolina’s Kenan-Flagler Business School, Mizuno requested a statistical analysis of the widest viable range of Americans capable of adopting running as a consistent source of aerobic exercise. Using the U.S. Census Bureau’s overall population stat of 320 million, the team estimated that 270 million Americans could realistically be converted to regular runners.

With that in mind, the team determined that running could lead to myriad improved outcomes. Take a look:

Mental/Emotional Impact

  • 37 percent more smiles
  • 163,607 (or 18.7 percent) fewer divorces annually
  • 29.3 million happier marriages

Economic/Commercial Impact

  • National productivity lost fro sick days could be reduced by 50 percent from 2.3 percent to just 1.15 percent
  • A 1.15 percent improvement in productivity could lead to $25.3 billion in new exports or a $25.3 billion increase in GDP

Health/Medical Impact

  • $143 billion savings in health-care costs
  • 200 million inches lost from American waistlines
  • 48.1 million fewer cigarettes smoked daily
  • 116,000 fewer hip replacements annually
  • Increased average life expectancy of 6.2 years in men and 5.6 years in women


  • 63 million happier dogs (based on increased walks/runs
  • 135 million fewer hours spent watching TV
  • 14 billion fewer house spent online
Happy runner=happy dog?

Happy runner = happy dog?

Kind of impressive, no? I can’t speak for others, but I certainly know I’m in a better place when I run. Multiply that exponentially as Mizuno and UNC did, and well, the sky’s clearly the limit. Maybe we can all do our part to help bring more people into the fold.

Do you think the projected stats are realistic? Have you ever recruited someone to running? 

Disclosure: This is a sponsored post for Mizuno.


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  1. says

    I believe!!! Now, do I WANT everyone running? Hmmm. I’m thinking it would be harder to get my Brooks and signing up for races may become a tad tricky but, if it’s going to do so much good then YES, let’s do it!
    Being a personal trainer and fitness instructor for many years, I can happily say that I have recruited many, many people to run. Some are even STILL at it and happier for it. I know I am.
    Allie recently posted..I’ll Tell You What I Really ThinkMy Profile

  2. says

    My job as a PNP would completely change! Less obesity, less constipation. That would be great! I’d probably see more sports injuries, but athletes are pretty motivated to get better, so that would be a plus too!
    Wendy@Taking the Long Way Home recently posted..Ouch.My Profile

  3. says

    So interesting to think about! I wish we could all collect together as a community and do this, but I am sure this campaign will help some people! I would love to see the changes that would have to be made to make the world more runner friendly to make this possible! Imagine all the trails, dirt paths, sidewalks, green spaces would have to be improved! Yes please!

    I am sure you have already inspired people to start running, keep it going :)
    Tina Muir recently posted..International Women’s DayMy Profile

  4. says

    Totally unrealistic. Not because I wouldn’t like to see it happen, but we do not have the infrastructure to support it. Using roughly 15 million runners as a starting point (people who “ran” at least 100 days over 52 weeks) means that to reach 270 million runners we would have to increase by a factor of 18x. If I consider just the running locations in the Houston area I am familiar with, I cannot think of one that can handle those kind of increases because it would be akin to putting on a major race every single day twice a day (once for morning runners and once for afternoon/evening runners). Case in point: Memorial Park hosts several thousand runners every day. Multiply that by 18x and it’s more runners than all but the largest marathons. Even my neighborhood, with 21 miles of paved sidewalks and trails, would be unable to accommodate an increase like that. Again, I would love to see it happen, because I would have a lot more friends, but it’s a total rethink of how we design cities and neighborhoods (not necessarily a bad thing).
    Jamoosh recently posted..WTF or Wednesday Things FourMy Profile

    • MissZippy says

      I would love to have it be the cause of infrastructure changes…more pathways, parks, etc. would be a great thing!

  5. says

    I believe all of it… now we just need to convince the rest of the world! My hubby used to resent my running and race training. Now he’s training for his first marathon and we’ve been doing a lot of long runs together and I would say we’re a lot closer for it. He’s also nearly 20 lbs lighter than when we married- not hard on his big frame, but he most importantly he FEELS good, which is also vital to a happy marriage and home.

    But I too have other relatives that scoff and love to repeat things like, “Ha! I’m allergic to exercise!” *shrug* You can’t win over all of them!
    Jen @ ConcreteNCoffee recently posted..Playlists Now Available on Spotify!My Profile

  6. says

    I always say that the world would be a better place if everyone ran. I know the HUGE positive impact running has had on just my life and my family/friends since I started, so I think the global impact would be huge and awesome!! :) If only….
    Erin recently posted..What to do when you can’t runMy Profile

  7. says

    oh, and I meant to say that as much as I love running, I don’t think that everyone would have to run to have this positive effect. I think everyone just needs to get active and find something they are passionate about and enjoy and will stick with (whether that is running, cycling, Cross Fit, swimming, etc.) Exercise is powerful!
    Erin recently posted..What to do when you can’t runMy Profile

  8. says

    I especially like to see kids/teens get hooked on running since it is something they can do for the rest of their lives!!!
    Way back in my middle school coaching days, I made sure that all of my athletes knew that running was never a “punishment.” I hate when coaches use laps as a way to “punish” because all it does it makes the basketball, volleyball, etc. players hate running. We ran for conditioning and to have more stamina in the games – I always ran with them (except the last month I coached since I was super pregnant!!)
    Kim recently posted..You Take the Good, You Take the BadMy Profile

  9. says

    Obviously you can’t have everyone running, but if those that could run actually did run, that would be fantastic. Even three 2-mile sessions per week would be a great achievement for most people, and quite manageable too.

  10. says

    I’ve recruited a few people to run, and they still actually run!

    I think those stats are amazing! Imagine what other things it could impact!!

    Although being a nurse, I’m sure there wouldn’t be a shortage if everyone ran!! Hmmm.
    Michele recently posted..Surgery UpdateMy Profile

  11. says

    Those are some really cool numbers! I was one that: became happy, spent less time at the dr’s (well, except for knee and hip surgery and PT for it- but both were non running related!!), eat better, feel better, and have done a lot to increase the international coffee trade. My earning has increased, too with some coaching and some writing (running has really helped my creative juices flow again!!).
    Erik recently posted..My kid’s picture book is on Amazon!!My Profile

  12. says

    Bad science is intellectually insulting, and furthers the cause of ‘science as marketing’.

    Look – as a runner passing 25 years since I did my first ‘by choice’ run at 23, I am TOTALLY in favor of running. But as a scientist and statistician … I completely hate this anti-intellectual approach to using ‘statistics’ and ‘research’ to sell product.

    Bottom line – while the product (running) is better, the approach is the same as watching Mad Men nuance science to push cigarettes.
    Michael Anderson recently posted..(Twenty) Five Things Friday – My Quarter Century Runner-versary!My Profile

  13. says

    It’s really a cool and useful piece of info. I am glad that you shared this helpful information
    with us. Please keep us up to date like this. Thanks for
    Ciera recently posted..CieraMy Profile

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  15. says

    If everyone’s name was Ran, well, that might prove to be a little complicated, even though it would be wonderful from a values, emotions, creativity and willpower perspective. 😉

  16. says

    P.S. The actual question might be when everyone will stop publishing such illusionary content packed into supposedly accurate, oversimplified infographics.

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