Many people like to lose weight by running and it’s not hard to see why.
- It’s cheap – Costs nothing as no equipment or gym is required!
- Effective – It works and is a proven calorie burner!
- Efficient – It can be done anywhere and everywhere! Just put on your running shoes and you can get started as soon as you leave the front door!
What is the best way to lose weight by running though? You have many options and should exercises those options — pun intended.
If you aren’t keeping track and progressing – What reason will your body have to progress in terms of weight loss? Do you see the same people at the gym or know of anybody who goes to the gym or runs a lot but always looks the same?
These people likely are doing the same thing over and over again which has resulted in their body getting used to the intensity that they train at!
Cardiovascular exercises (like running) are pretty simple. They are basically exercises that raise your heart rate to try and pump more oxygen around the body to the muscles that need it.
At the very core of cardio exercise, you have two options.
Some people prefer to do high intensity cardiovascular workouts while others prefer low intensity cardio workouts. Whichever you choose (I’d recommend starting off with low intensity cardio if you’ve never trained before), remember to document your progress in a journal or notebook.
However, running to lose weight can be more effective if you’re using high intensity cardiovascular work.
The fitness industry has come full circle from the old days where everybody would recommend staying in the “fat burn zone” which was very low intensity!
Its no surprise that when you begin to run faster or at a greater intensity, you burn more calories – But that isn’t the full story as to why high intensity running to lose weight is more effective.
In simple terms, when you finish a high intensity run, your body did not get the required amount of oxygen it needed during the workout (hence why towards the end you’ll normally feel a lot more burning in the legs with high intensity running as lactic acid builds up in the absence of oxygen).
This basically causes your body to be in “oxygen debt” or scientifically known as EPOC (excess post-exercise oxygen consumption) – This debt normally takes around 24-28 hours to be repaid and during this time your metabolism is raised much higher than usual! Burning more fat in the process!
Sounds good, right? Oh – did I forget to mention that high intensity cardio doesn’t need to be done for long periods like low intensity does? Efficient too as you’ll probably burn the same, if not more calories in less time!
Don’t get me wrong, low intensity cardio has it’s place. You won’t be able to do high intensity cardio every day of the week as it is quite demanding! You can mix the two for good effect.
If you want to lose weight by running, structure your workout and stick with it for at least 6-8 weeks. Many people have run the same way their whole life and their body really won’t respond anymore as it is comfortable with the exercise.
Maybe, try something completely new, such as skipping/boxing/cycling/rowing/sports. Most of these will be done with high intensity without you even realizing because you’re having fun! Your body will also start responding to the new stimulus.
However, if you want to stick with running to lose weight, you have many options and progressions that you can use to keep things fresh, exciting and most of all, effective.
There are many more exercises out there. Find one that will help you to achieve your weight loss goals while you’re having fun doing it!