8 Mental Health Benefits of Running from the Founder of the Don’t Quit Half & 5K

Jennifer Gray Anthony, Don’t Quit Half & 5K founder, has discovered running to be invaluable in the fight against depression and anxiety. The avid runner has been impacted by mental health throughout her entire life either with the depression and suicide of her beloved mother, the untimely passing of her loving father or going through her own struggles over the years. After a severe car accident that left her severely injured with doctors doubting she would ever run again, Jennifer realized the impact running had on not only her physical health, but also her overall mental health. 

Throughout it all, Jennifer has remained strong and continues to live by the motto of “Don’t Quit.” Running gave her a different outlook on life, the sense of self-belief she needed. Now, she wants to encourage others.

As a result of her determination, she started the Don’t Quit Half & 5K, which takes place on October 5, 2019 at Flag Pole Hill in Dallas. Jennifer partnered with NAMI North Texas, which provides mental health support, education and advocacy free of charge for individuals and family members in Dallas, Collin, Denton and Rockwall counties.

No matter if you’re an elite runner, a competitive runner or a casual runner, running is undoubtedly good for your physical health, but there are studies that show how it can benefit your mental health, too. Here are a few mental health benefits you get from running:

  1. Decreases symptoms of depression
  2. Gives you a calmer state of mind by lowering stress and anxiety
  3. Boosts self-esteem
  4. Helps you sleep better
  5. Sharpens your memory
  6. Slows cognitive decline
  7. Increases mindfulness
  8. Increases creativity

So, if you’re feeling stressed out or are filled with anxiety, lace up those running shoes and take them for a spin. And, don’t quit! 


Help stop the mental health stigma! Join Don’t Quit Half & 5K at Flag Pole Hill in October for a day where mind and body come together. In addition to the race, the morning will include DJ, food trucks, vendor booths and more. 

When: October 5, 2019, 7:30 a.m.

Location: Flagpole Hill @ White Rock Lake, 8015 Doran Circle, Dallas, Texas 75238

To register: DontQuitHalf.com 

To save $5, use the discount code DQ2019 upon checkout. 


Serving Dallas, Collin, Denton and Rockwall counties, NAMI North Texas, a 501(c)3, is part of the nation’s largest grassroots mental health organization dedicated to building better lives for the millions of Americans impacted by mental health conditions.

The proceeds from the 2019 Don’t Quit Half Marathon will be used by NAMI North Texas in the following ways:

  • To provide support free of charge to people with mental health conditions and to their families
  • To educate families and consumers free of charge
  • To advocate for nondiscriminatory and equitable policies at the federal, state, and local level and in the private sector
  • To advocate for improved opportunities for housing, rehabilitation, and meaningful jobs
  • To support research into the causes and treatments of brain disorders
  • To support public education programs designed to help eliminate the pervasive stigma surrounding severe mental health conditions.


To learn more about NAMI North Texas, visit NAMINorthTexas.org or follow the nonprofit on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram.