Investigation of Health Behavior on Burnout Scores in Women Physicians who Self-Identify as Runners: A Cross-Sectional Survey Study

Hannah Uhlig-Reche, Allison R. Larson, Julie K. Silver, Adam Tenforde, Alisa McQueen, Monica Verduzco-Gutierrez

Research output: Contribution to journalArticlepeer-review


As the proportion of women in the physician workforce increases, burnout in this population warrants further investigation. Exercise is an often-proposed strategy to combat burnout. Evaluating physical activity across a cohort of women physicians can assess associations of health behaviors with burnout. Cross-sectional study of women attending physicians in the United States who are actively engaged in a social media group for runners. An electronic survey comprised of 60 questions covering demographics, health behaviors, and burnout was administered. A healthy lifestyle subgroup (HLS) was defined based on American Heart Association physical activity and nutrition recommendations. We determine the prevalence of burnout and investigate associations between health behavior factors and burnout. Of the 369 included surveys, most respondents were at least six years out from medical training (85.9%) and White (74.5%). Forty-two percent experienced burnout symptoms. Time exercising was significantly associated with fruit/vegetable consumption (P=.00002). There was no significant difference in burnout between the HLS compared to others (P =.37). This group of self-reported physically active women physicians was found to have a lower prevalence of burnout when compared to other women physicians. Exercise and nutrition may be protective against burnout in women physicians but deserve further investigation.

Original languageEnglish (US)
Pages (from-to)831-838
Number of pages8
JournalAmerican Journal of Lifestyle Medicine
Issue number6
StatePublished - Nov 1 2023


  • aerobic exercise
  • burnout
  • exercise
  • health behavior
  • job stress
  • mental health
  • occupational health
  • physician burnout
  • running
  • women’s health

ASJC Scopus subject areas

  • Medicine (miscellaneous)
  • Health Policy
  • Public Health, Environmental and Occupational Health


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