How to Lose Weight by Running

Fitness – If it came in a bottle, everybody would have a great body.” ~ Cher

The most successful way to lose weight by running and keeping it off is to commit to running regularly 4-5 times a week and combine it with a healthy low calorie diet. 

Haven't we all seen it, friends that went on a diet or exercise plan to lose weight and were successful...but quickly went back to their old ways and put the weight back on.

Studies show that by far, the best way to lose the weight, and just as importantly -- keep it off, is to maintain a regular routine of exercising and dieting together.

Note: Please consult your doctor to make sure you are physically ready to start running on a regular basis. Once you get the ok from your physician, lace up your shoes and let's go!!!

Schedule Your Runs

Scheduling a regular time to run can be the difference in your success to lose weight by running. How many times do we say "I don't have time to workout". If you are serious about losing your weight by running, you have to realize that a lot of effort and a true time commitment has to be put in for you to have any chance of accomplishing your goals.

So, block off regular weekly times where you see available spots for your runs and make sure your family and friends understand how important it is to you. Be creative, perhaps you have to do some rearranging with your days or get up a little earlier to fit your run in. Just make sure to get it done.

7 Week Jog & Walk Plan

We have a 7 week Jog & Walk plan that will help you to get started correctly. This plan blends running and walking together which will help to reduce the initial stress of running and prevent a running injury. As the weeks go by, you will gradually run more and walk less. Click here to see our 7 week Jog & Walk Plan.

We do recommend that even before trying our 7-week plan, you should already be able to take a fairly brisk 30-minute walk without feeling excessive fatigue. 

Slow Down to Slim Down

You don't have to don't have to run at a "killer" pace to get rid of that spare tire. To lose weight by running, going at a slow pace can be just as effective as running at a higher intensity level.

Recent studies found that when it comes to losing abdominal fat, the level of intensity did not make a difference. By following a regular cardio plan 3-4 times a week, your metabolism will increase and burn the extra calories you need to melt away the body fat without you hurting yourself by running too hard.

Combine Your Running Plan With a Healthy Diet

You will want to eat healthy high energy foods that work cohesively with your exercise plan. Foods like whole grains, fruits, and vegetables are ideal. It is also a good idea to try and eat four or five small meals throughout the day; this will keep your metabolism running at a higher level than if you skip meals. 

By skipping meals all you are doing is putting your body into hibernation mode because it senses that you are not getting enough food. Your body will slow everything down internally to save energy and not burn calories. 

Strength Training for the Runner

To become a truly efficient runner, it is important that you include some strength training into your workout schedule. Many runners do whatever they can to avoid the gym because it interferes with their training -- but trust me, even though you might miss your morning run at times, the benefits for working your core and upper body muscles will pay off in the long run. 

lose weight by running and strength training together

As an added bonus, while cardio workouts like running burn a lot of immediate calories, strength training will elevate your metabolism for many hours after your workout is over burning extra fat and calories. This will help you to get rid of the fat and replace it with lean muscle,

Count Your Calories

A common eating mistake runners make is overcompensating for the calories they burned running by eating more.

A good way to monitor your calorie consumption is by keeping a journal of all the foods you eat every day. By monitoring your running for weight loss progress, you will be able to see if you're eating habits are helping or hurting your plan.

Tips to Avoid Running Injuries

  • Stride Length. You can lessen your chance of injury by making your stride shorter. Studies show that by shortening your stride 5-10% you can reduce the chance of some common runner injuries. Shorter strides put less impact on your knees and other vulnerable areas.

  • Back Pain. Lower back pain can be due a person leaning to far forward as they run which puts to much pressure on the knees and back. Consistent back pain can also be from weak core muscles that are not supporting the lower back enough.

  • Stretching. For the most part, the best time to stretch is after your run when your muscles are warm. Stretching is vital to maintain flexibility and a good range of motion.

  • Rest Time. One of the biggest mistake runners can make is not getting enough rest. For some runners the fear is that by taking days off they slow their progress when actually it is actually the complete opposite. By pushing to hard and fatiguing your leg muscles, your progress will hit a plateau.

    So, listen to your body and try not to push yourself past your limits. The last thing you want is a running injury that could set you back days, weeks or even months.

Lose Weight by Running

Running can be a fantastic workout routine to lose weight and tone the body, however, any type of weight loss strategy can only be accomplished with motivation, and an ongoing "game-plan" that you follow religiously. Once you can put all of those pieces together, you shouldn't have a problem reaching your weight goals and maintaining them. 

Other pages that might interest you:

I will continue to share ideas about diet and exercise that have helped me along the way. If you have any questions I can help you with, or if you have any ideas you want to share, feel free to contact me or visit our Q&A forum.

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