Which is better for weight loss– running or walking? Which is better for overall health? There are a lot of avid runners and walkers with strong opinions out there. Let’s weigh the pros and cons of running vs walking!
Running vs. Walking
Running vs. walking Calories Burnt
Bottom line– you burn more calories per hour by running. Running for an hour burns an average of 800 calories, walking burns 300. Over the same distance the calorie burn is not significantly different, but of course walking is going to take longer.
Running vs. Walking Benefits
Both running and walking will lower your risk of heart disease, diabetes, and hypertension. Regularly running or walking will prevent osteoporosis and lower your body weight. All good things for your health! Both shift your mood and relieve stress.
The biggest con of running is greater risk of injury (like my infamous IT band flareup…womp, womp.) Runners are an injury-prone bunch, the constant pounding is tough on muscles, hips, and feet. Especially, “excessive” longer distance running can hurt your heart over time.
Walking “excessively” isn’t really a thing, so you can really not do too much of it.
Running vs. Walking for Weight Loss
Running burns more calories and so I think it’s definitely the more effective weight loss tool. But whichever workout you will ENJOY more and thus DO more consistently will be best for your weight loss. In a few certain situations (PCOS, insulin resistance, or thyroid disorder) your body can interpret running as a stress which negatively affects your weight loss efforts.
Running vs. Walking Equipment
Gear is more important for running but either way it’s good to be comfortable! IHere are some of my favorite gear for running.
- My favorite running leggings!! — No chafing and they hold up SO well!!
- The sports bra that holds things tight! (Also perfect for nursing moms!)
- A classic workout top in beautiful colors!
- Brooks running shoes
If you are going to be running regularly I suggest going to your local running store and getting professionally fitted for shoes. A running store will evaluate your gait and even check out your old shoes to see how they have worn out in the past and make recommendations. This may cost more but it is definitely worth it!!
One thing I love about walking is there is no equipment required!! You just walk! I
Overall, choose running or walking based on your goals.
Choose running or walking based on what you like — the BEST workout is one you will actually do! So choose the one that appeals to you and make it a regular part of your healthy living lifestyle.
In the past, running has always been a great way to lose weight and tone up. I love my runner’s high and setting and accomplishing running goals.
I also love walks for being active, relaxing, and enjoying the outdoors. Walking with my kids is one of my absolute favorite things! It’s a low stress workout with long term benefits and one of the best exercises for those who are insulin resistant.
If you want to start running, doing run-walk intervals is a great way to start! You don’t have to choose between the two, but incorporate both in your healthy lifestyle!