Tuesday, August 2, 2011

Running Vs Walking



I often wonder what is overall better for weight loss and exercise. I have heard A LOT of pro's about both running and walking. I have never made any decision on what is better; Running 3 miles, or speed walking 3 miles.

Although I haven't heard any major CON'S about either in the form of exercise and importance, I've heard a TON of propaganda in articles steering the reader towards a certain direction.

Sorry, let's back track a minute here and see where this discussion came from. I went on my "run" today, and it felt TERRIBLE!!! I haven't exercised since last Wednesday and I felt lazy and worn out. I could hardly move my legs forward. I "ran" about 2 miles, and decided to speed walk the last 2 miles. Obviously walking was much easier on me, but I did notice some good differences. It felt as though more of my muscles in my legs were being used and felt like it. I don't think I slowed down much at all. I pushed hard and held a very fast walk. We all know I'm a pitiful runner, I have very bad joints. So is a good hard speed walk better for me?

I read a few articles online this morning and found a huge variety of opinions. I found one that claimed if you're walking hard and fast (not lallygagging), then your walk can be comparable to a jog. The next article I read made me feel foolish for even thinking of walking. If I were to read between the lines I'm sure it said something that only those who need to loose an excess of 50 lbs should consider walking, and then work up to jogging as soon as possible.

I found today a good hard fast speed type walk pretty tough this morning. I know it would have been difficult for me to carry on a conversation. How can that be bad? My joints feel much better too. I have very little pain right now.

Here are three articles (out of the hundreds that I scanned, and many that I actually read) that I thought were helpful.
http://www.healthyexerciseworld.com/running-vs-walking.html
http://www.therunnersguide.com/runningvswalking/
http://health.ninemsn.com.au/whatsgoodforyou/theshow/694482/walking-versus-running-151-whats-better

My Conclusion -
Walking or Running - If you do it right, it's going to benefit you in some great ways. You will burn somewhere around 2x's the calories if you run instead of walk. But if you are keeping a strong fast speed walk, then you'll burn almost the same amount of calories in the same distance as a jog.

So, is walking a waste of time? - HELL NO! But do it right! Enjoy yourself, but don't be in day dream mode.


7 comments:

Karen@WaistingTime said...

How about intervals!?

BnE's Mommy said...

I just have to stop and listen to my body...being overweight it can be a strain on my joints (and bad knee) to jog/run. So if my body says "run" then I run, if it says "walk" I walk. I think it all boils down to what makes your body feel good. :)

Christina said...

My take: The best exercise is the one you'll do. I like running, so that's what I do.

wendiw80 said...

when i first started running, my body had a hard time adjusting to it. I was in pain and it took a while just to get used to it.

I would recommend a good walk to run program that will help you. The slower you ease into running, the better it will get and the easier it is on your body. I only run 3 days a week and two of those days usually include intervals/speedwork and those things help me when I have to just go out and run.

it's also taken me a full year to adjust to running and if I take a break, i have to slowly get back into running again.

sammy said...

I think you have to do what you enjoy ... otherwise you won't do it at all and it will be a struggle.

Thin Lizzy said...

I found that running really helped me tone up and drop inches more so than dropping pounds.

Diandra said...

Well, I guess it depends... jogging burns more calories in a shorter amount of time, but it also puts more stress on your knees and your cardiovascular system. Walking, on the other had, is something that most people can do for a much longer period of time, and fast walkers may even overtake slow joggers (I know I did when I was walking regularly).

In the end, every kind of move is good for losing weight. I love running, but I think if the risk of injuring myself and thus having to pause would become too big, I'd happily walk again.

(PS: My points system rewards 6 points for one hour of hard walking and for 30min of moderate jogging. I'm wiped after 30min of running, but could walk hours and days. So, which one would be better? ^^ )