Several exercises are designed to help with weight loss and running is one of them. In this article, we’ll discuss how running can help with weight loss and some important tips to consider.
How does running help with weight loss?
Running is a high calorie-burning exercise
Did you know that a 30-minute run at 5 mph burns 355 calories in individuals who weigh 185 pounds?
That’s the same amount of energy used in a 30-minute basketball game. It’s also more than the 311 calories utilized in a 30-minute soccer game!
These numbers are according to the Harvard University in a calorie expenditure chart of 30-minute activities. (Also note: exercise burns more calories in heavier individuals than in already leaner ones).
In a comparative study, researchers enrolled participants to run and walk the same distance. Their energy expenditure for the two activities were evaluated.
The findings show that running requires or burns more energy for the same distance compared to walking.
A separate study also found something else. Researchers found that running works multiple muscles and makes them exert more force which contributes to calorie burning.
Moderate-to-high intensity running sheds harmful belly fat
But here’s the good news:
Even without a hypocaloric diet, moderate-to-high intensity aerobic exercises like running is a helpful way to shed that flabby, belly fat.
Also, overweight children were found to have improved body composition after a 6-week high-intensity intermittent running exercise.
High-intensity running promotes satiety
Aerobic exercises are found to deactivate the hunger hormone ghrelin and increase the satiety hormone peptide YY (PYY). This, in turn, promotes the feeling of fullness and suppressing your desire to eat.
Running exercise is truly a wise choice if you want to lose weight.
How to make running for weight loss more effective
First and foremost, don’t begin a running program without a full medical examination!
It is important to have yourself checked first just in case you have some condition where running is contraindicated.
Once you’re good to go, follow, and incorporate these tips in your running exercise to efficiently achieve your weight loss and fitness goals.
1. Eat quality carbs
True, too many carbohydrates in our food is unhealthy. But a lack of this essential nutrient is also detrimental to the body.
This is especially important when you need those nutrients as fuel used by the muscles during workouts.
The best option, therefore, is to consume the right types and amount of carbohydrates.
For eample, eat fiber-rich, slow-burning carbs from fruits, whole grains, and vegetables. These are good for steady blood sugar levels and sustainable sources of energy.
Fast-burning carbs on the other hand are low in fibers but are useful for energy boosts before a run. These can be obtained from pasta, white rice, white flour, and the likes.
Just make sure not to depend on carbohydrates as your major calorie source. Also, know the kind of carbs in your food as well as when to consume it.
2. Eat the right fats
Eating fats doesn’t necessarily result in a plump body. Just like with carbs, the secret is choosing to eat the right kind of fats such as the unsaturated fats.
There are several health benefits of mono- and polyunsaturated fats.
For example it can help promote satiety, prevent heart disease, and reduce stress injuries and joint pain. And all of these are critical to running exercises as well as losing weight.
3. Go for real, whole foods
Don’t get dazed by extravagant promises of “diet products” in the market. Why? Because although they may help you lose weight in some way, going natural is still the best approach to health.
Pair your running with the consumption of whole foods such as fresh fruits, vegetables, lean meat, whole grains, and nuts.
This will give you essential nutrients and keep you satiated without the extra food processing components.
Avoid “energy-dense” foods such as hamburgers. And opt for “less dense” food such as a fresh chicken sandwich or vegetable soup, instead.
4. Pair running with strength training
Contrary to popular belief, strength training will not necessarily make a big, buff body out of you.
Strength exercises pose significant health benefits and one of them is the burning of body fat.
Granted, this fat you burn from strength training adds to the weight you lose from running.
Also, strength exercises build your muscles. And this can enhance your running performance while keeping you away from injuries.
5. Reduce calorie intake
When talking about diet, the best way to reduce weight is still to lessen your calorie intake.
You won’t have to shed that much weight if you are not consuming extra calories in the first place, right?
But be wary of the extent you lessen your calorie intake. Cutting too many calories can affect your energy. Eventually, this may make it harder for you to run and may even lead you to fail in your exercise routine.
6. Mix and vary your running routines
While it is good to have a consistent running regimen, try to vary and be more creative with your exercises.
This will keep your drive and motivation to run regularly. In the long run, you will be able to sustain your running exercises and attain your weight loss goals.
Explore the different types of running exercise and look for other workouts that you can incorporate in your daily run.
7. Run faster
Finally, if you are already attuned to your usual running speed, try to gradually increase your rate.
Running at a faster speed is associated with greater weight loss as stated in a research published in the Journal of Sports Sciences.
You can never go wrong with choosing running as a weight loss exercise. And with the help of these running tips, rest assured that your running regime for weight loss purposes won’t go waste.
It can also help you break a weight loss plateau when combined with proper nutrition. Try up your game at running when possible. (Further reading: How Much Weight Can You Lose in 30 Days? and 10 Weight Loss Rules if You Want to Lose Weight).
Because then, not only are you making your routine interesting and your body healthier, you are also bound to lose greater amounts of weight.