Running and walking, both are incredible forms of exercise that can help keep you fit and lose weight. People who indulge in either form of workout have healthier hearts, lesser body weight and improved bone health in comparison to people who do not perform any kind of physical workout. The debate over which is better for you may depend on various factors like your fitness level, age and health condition. Read through this article and find out what is best for you!
Running Or Walking – Which Is Better?
Walking and running are excellent ways of performing cardio workouts. Merely 30 minutes of moderate intensity workout for three days a week helps keep depression and anxiety at bay, and it also helps uplift your self-esteem and mood. Where walking may help you maintain a healthy weight, running can burn more calories and help you lose weight faster. Therefore, whether you should opt for running or choose walking, depends on what goals you may have in your mind.
1. If Your Fitness Goal Is To Maximize Calorie Burning
If a person weighing 160 pounds walks for 30 minutes, he may burn approximately 150 calories. However, if the same person opts for running for the same duration, he may end up burning roughly 350 calories. Burning calories is vital if your aim is losing weight. 3500 calories make a pound of weight, which means in order to shed a pound, you must lose 3500 calories, and running is any day better for losing calories than walking. Hence, one of the main differences between walking and running is the number of calories burnt per minute of exercise.
Running is more demanding on the body and involves lesser efficient movements; hence you are able to burn more calories in lesser time. However, if time is not a constraint and you can walk a long distance to burn the same amount of calories, walking would be a good choice. Finally, if burning calories is the main aim then exercising alone may not be helpful. It is very important that you put a restriction on the number of calories you consume in a day.
2. If Your Fitness Goal Is To Reduce Belly Fat
Most of us struggle with obnoxious belly fat these days, and walking or running can help you reduce the stubborn fat stored in your midriff. It is often seen that people struggle to get rid of this stubborn belly fat. This is because visceral fat is embedded deeper in the abdominal region, and it usually surrounds vital organs such as the pancreas and the liver. This stored fat can become fatal for the health, as it may exhibit a substantial increase in triglyceride levels and insulin resistance.
It is very important to lose this stubborn belly fat for overall health and well-being. One should indulge in a high-intensity workout to melt out or reduce belly fat, and running is one of the important steps in that direction. In order to reap maximum benefits, you can include running and alternating it with walking, as it is a great way to get better results. This is also great for not letting your body undergo a lot of stress.
3. If Your Fitness Goal Is To Improve Heart Health
There are immense benefits of running and walking, and both are good to maintain good heart health. However, when you opt for running, you put immense pressure on your heart which is essential to improve heart health. If you are contemplating running or walking which is better for fat loss, well, there is no doubt that running helps you lose approximately double the number of calories at the same time. However, running vs walking to lose weight may become more strenuous on your body, which means more chances of injuries and accidents.
Runners are more prone to shin splints, stress fractures, ITB friction fractures etc, whereas a walker is only at a risk of 1 to 5 per cent to sustain any kind of injury during a workout, a jogger has a whopping 20 to 70 per cent chance. Therefore, if you choose running over walking it is very important that you take basic safety measures to be safe. Also, it is not advisable to go overboard with running as you can always alternate it with walking, especially if you are a beginner.
Running and walking are both excellent ways to stay fit and active. More than laying emphasis on what you should be doing, you should make it a point to be regular with your workouts to achieve optimum results. As a beginner, you can start with 150 minutes of moderate cardio, in a week.
If you are looking at maintaining your body weight, walking is a smart choice. However, if you are looking at shedding extra pounds, running can be considered. There is no harm in trying both forms of exercise on an alternate basis. However, make sure you check with your doctor before starting any physical activity or exercise.