Fitness: Run to lose weight: these four rules lead to success

LGetting up is not only good for your cardiovascular system, but it can also help you lose weight. The amount of walking you need to do to lose weight depends on several factors. Among other things: fitness level, current weight, target weight and diet. Here’s a summary of how you can start running and how often you should run to lose weight.

For a reduction, you must be in a calorie deficit. That means you are consuming fewer calories than you burn each day. Since running burns a significant number of calories, this type of exercise can help fill that deficit. The exact number of calories you burn while running depends on several factors, including your weight and age, as well as the speed and duration of your runs.

Different requirements: the number of calories burned depends on several factors

Different requirements: the number of calories burned depends on several factors

Source: dpa/Frank Hammerschmidt

In a 2013 study, researchers compared the effects of running and walking. They found that the runners lost significantly more weight. The study examined the physical activities of a total of 45,000 walkers and runners over a period of more than six years. The research team found that heavier men and women in particular lost more weight when running than when walking.

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The four rules to lose weight

1. Start slowly

When you first start running, it’s especially important to start slowly. You should not overdo it at first. This is the only way to avoid injury or exhaustion. “It’s really important to give your body time to recover from the stress,” says Katherine Beals. She is a Professor of Nutrition and Physiology at the University of Utah, United States. “If you start too fast, it can also be a mental challenge. You may not enjoy it after that,” says track and field coach Karen Dunn.

Good mood: not putting yourself under pressure is an important prerequisite for further training

Good mood: not putting yourself under pressure is an important prerequisite for further training

Credit: pa/SvenSimon/Frank Hoermann/SVEN SIMON

One way to start slowly is with the run-walk-run method. With this training method you alternate running and walking. For someone who is new to running and trying to lose weight, there is a sample training plan that Dunn recommends. You should have a rest day between each training session. Once you get used to running for longer periods, you can gradually increase the duration and speed. A good rule of thumb, according to Dunn, is not to increase your pace or distance by more than 10 percent per week.

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2. Healthy eating

You will get better results if you take care of your diet in addition to running. “Unless I change my diet, running alone won’t result in significant weight loss. You have to combine the two,” says nutritionist Katherine Beals.

For a small study from 2009, overweight men and women exercised five times a week for 12 weeks. It was found that those who also had a healthy diet lost more weight. Another study, also from 2009, found the same thing: Obese adults lost more weight in the long term when they followed a combination of diet and exercise instead of just diet.

If you’re reducing your calorie intake to lose weight, it’s important to make sure you’re eating a balanced diet. Reducing your calorie intake too much can mean your body doesn’t have enough strength to exercise, says Beals. Here are some basic tips for healthy eating:

Eat more fruits and vegetables.

Focus on whole grains.

Eat more healthy fats.

Avoid finished products.

3. Additional strength training

Strength training reduces the risk of running injuries. It can also boost your metabolism, so the muscles you build burn more calories even when you’re resting. That’s according to a 2009 study. A research team found that regular strength training can increase resting metabolic rate, muscle strength, and total lean mass in both men and women.

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To start strength training, you should first try bodyweight exercises. These include, for example, squats, push-ups, forearm stands, pull-ups. Once you feel comfortable with the exercises, you can slowly add weights. Again, add lighter weights first, then slowly increase.

4. Increase the intensity

High-intensity interval training (HIIT) is a way to increase the intensity of your run. In this type of training, short periods of time are completed at a very high intensity, followed by short bursts of recovery that are less intense. For such a workout, you can, for example, run for a certain amount of time, then jog at an easy pace and repeat the whole thing several times. HIIT training typically burns more calories than traditional training. This applies in particular to the time after training.

HIIT Running: Intense Intervals Increase Calorie Burn

HIIT Running: Intense Intervals Increase Calorie Burn

Credit: pa/Zoonar/Max

Another small study found similar results. The researchers found that women who did speed interval training for six weeks lost an average of eight percent of their body fat. Their waist circumference decreased by an average of 3.5 percent. The workouts the women underwent during this study consisted of 30-second sprints followed by four-minute rests, three times a week.

So how long should you run to lose weight?

Each person is different. Therefore, there are no specific prescribed running rules that you can use to lose weight. The number on the scale shouldn’t be your only focus, either. Some people who start running find that they look slimmer and fitter, even if their weight hasn’t changed much. “I think too much focus on scale can never be beneficial,” says Katherine Beal. Running and a healthy diet offer many benefits beyond weight loss. Running can help improve your mood, heart health, and overall health.

The important thing is that before starting any exercise or weight loss program, you should consult a doctor. Above all, you should make sure to start slow if you are a beginner runner. Also, if you don’t overdo it, you’ll be more likely to enjoy running and stick to your training schedule. Also pay attention to a healthy accompanying diet, which contributes to a better mood and the best possible training effect.

Cheers to Quinoa Wild Rice Bowl – Nutrition is an Important Companion

Cheers to Quinoa Wild Rice Bowl – Nutrition is an Important Companion

Source: pa/dpa-tmn/Christin Klose

This article first appeared on Business Insider.

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