Why Running is Good for Weight Loss?

Why Running is Good for Weight Loss?

Running is a great way to lose weight and in particular body fat.

Running as an activity falls under the category of aerobic exercise as it:

A. Increases the heart rate!

B. Increase the rate of breathing and thus the amount of oxygen transported to the muscles!

The importance of these two factors is that they enable the body to begin to use body fat as the primary energy source instead of glycogen. In the beginning of your run, stored carbohydrates in the muscle are the energy source. This lasts for about 30 minutes until the amount of glycogen is reduced by 30%

While you can’t measure the reduction by yourself, it occurs when your heart rate –

A. Rises to a level above 65% of your maximum heart rate which is, 220 – Your Present Age

B. The time spent exercising reaches about 30 minutes

At this point, your body will automatically shift to using a fat tissue. The reason that this happens is to preserve the glycogen remaining in the legs and buttocks for general use when you stop running.

The act of running by definition means that at a given point in time, both feet are off of the ground at the same time while walking always maintains one foot on the ground. This extra effort of propelling yourself into the air requires more calories to be used and thus causes more weight to be lost during your run.

And while it is true that walking briskly will cause your heart rate to rise to a level that may be equal to running, walking uses fewer calories than running. The number of calories that a person, either man or woman will use is determined by:

A. Your body weight

B. The length of time spent running

C. The speed at which you run

Running is usually done at a rate of greater than 4 miles per hour and will burn about 500-600 calories per hour for an 180 lb(82 kg) person. To calculate your own rate, multiply the percentage difference between your weight and this subject.

For example, if you weigh 135 lbs. (61 kgs), that is 25% less in body weight and so would use 25% fewer calories or about 375-450 calories per hour. A person weighing 225 lbs. (102 kgs) would use 25% more calories or 625-750 calories per hour.

Running faster will burn more calories as it takes more energy to increase the speed. However, the increased speed that causes a moderate increase in the use of calories, also causes an increase in the heart rate as well. There comes a point at which running stops being an aerobic exercise and becomes an anaerobic one due to the heart rate being too high.

At this point, the body stops using fat as the energy source and goes back to using glycogen for energy/begins to use muscle tissue as an energy source.

Imagine the shape of well-trained marathon runners. They not only have lost most of their body fat due to high energy running, but also have lost most of their muscle mass as well. If 65% of your maximum heart rate is the low end of the correct heart rate range, the upper end of the range is 80%.

A moderate rate of running will enable:

A. Maximum fat loss to occur

B. A greater amount of exercise to be done without fatigue

C. A shorter recovery period prior to you next session allowing for the most weight loss to occur.

Though there are a lot of benefits of running in your daily life, going for a run for the first few times can feel really hard – it’s difficult to breathe, muscles ache, lungs burnout, and all you want to do is STOP right away. Listen, don’t give up!

We have got some simple tricks and techniques, which you can incorporate in your routine and these will actually help to make running as easy as a breeze (definitely, for the first time you will enjoy running) instead of a difficult chore.

Here’s the list-

1. Keep a Slow Start

There’s no need to start your run at a speed of 8 minutes per mile. When you are new to running, the key to become a master at it is to go slow. The right speed for a starter would be enough so you’re breathing faster than you would if just walking, but not huffing and puffing so much that your lungs hurt or you’re gasping for each breath.

Just chuck the interval training (we know its great for faster weight loss especially around the tummy) and opt for a consistent running pace.

If you slow down a bit, it will allow you to focus on correct running form, give you ample time to enjoy the scenic beauty and also you’ll have the energy to chat with your workout buddy, all of which can actually make you love going out for a run.

When you get used to running and are comfortable with it, your pace will increase naturally, and then you can begin to challenge yourself with sprinting intervals.

2. Hills & Squats

Strong leg muscles are a must-have to run easily. One way to achieve that is to incorporate leg-strengthening work into your runs by adding hills. Running uphill is very challenging, but as soon as you get back to a flat surface you’ll be amazed to see the difference in your running speed.

Another option for stronger leg muscles is to incorporate leg-strengthening moves like squats, lunges, burpees, or step-ups!

3. Add the element of fun

If you literally hate your run it means that you are actually doing something wrong. It’s time that you start finding ways to make it more enjoyable like bringing your dog with you, running while listening to your tracks, exploring new running places and fitness gears, etc.. Adding an element of fun will bring a new spark and motivate you to go for runs more often!

4. Being Regular is the Key

In order to make your body accustomed to the demands of running, being regular is the key. Instead of waiting for free time or nice weather to go for a run, it would be better if you could make a weekly running schedule.

When you plan to run often it will help in strengthening the lower body and core muscles which will ultimately make running an easy activity for you. Ease into running regularly with shorter runs, and as it begins to feel easier, gradually increase the mileage per workout.

5. Don’t Beyond Run

Though running regularly is going to make your body very adaptive towards it, it is important to go beyond running to get over boredom and repetitive-stress injuries. It is advised to mix your cardio routine with biking, hiking, dancing, swimming, trekking, etc.

Engaging yourself in other kinds of cardio is going to enhance the overall strength of your body, so next time when you prepare to run, it's easier to stay ahead. Not only this, since you are taking a break from running, you are actually gonna miss it and when you get back to it, you will surely find it more enjoyable and fun!