If you're trying to lose weight, running is an effective cardio method to help you burn calories quickly and drop the extra weight. While it seems daunting to beginners, with the proper technique and perseverance, you can be running daily within four to six weeks. Ease yourself into running if you are a beginner. A great method of running for beginners is high-intensity interval training.
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Ease into It
Warm up by walking at a normal pace for five minutes. A warm-up is important because it increases blood flow to the muscles to prevent strain or injury.
Run for one minute as fast as you can manage, then walk for two minutes to allow your body to recover before running for another minute. This allows your body to rest in between spurts of running so that you are able to complete the full workout and receive all the benefits, including a higher amount of calories burned for up to 24 hours after the exercise.
Alternate between running for one minute and walking for two minutes for half an hour. Slow to normal walking speed and cool down for five minutes.
Run two days during the first week, and add another day of running each week until you are running daily.
Increase the length of time you are running by one minute and decrease the time walking by 30 seconds each week. For example, in the second week, run for two minutes and walk for one minute and 30 seconds. In the third week, run for three minutes and walk for one minute.
Increase the length of your runs by five minutes each week until you are able to run for a full 30 minutes without rest. You should hit this point in about six weeks. Cut out interval training completely and just run each day to continue losing weight.
Nutrition for Weight Loss
Eat 500 fewer calories than normal every day to lose 1 pound per week. When combined with intense running that burns 500 calories a day, you will lose up to 2 pounds per week. Meal trackers and apps are widely available online to help you track your progress.
Stay hydrated by drinking 8 cups of water every day, especially during intense exercise and running. Water is necessary to replace fluid lost during exercise, aid in digestion and help flush toxins out of your body.
Eat five or six small meals per day to keep your blood sugar stable and provide the energy needed for running. Eating frequently also keeps insulin levels low. High insulin levels, which can be caused by eating infrequently, force you body to store more fat.
Go for a run first thing in the morning to create a "runners' high" that lasts all day. Running releases neurotransmitters in the brain that cause a feeling of increased energy and mood.
Listening to music while running can add to feelings of well-being and motivate you to work out harder.
Always consult your doctor before beginning a new exercise program.
Buy shoes designed for professional runners to prevent injuries to your back and joints.
- ACE Fitness: Runner's High Is Real and Evolved to Help Us Survive
- ACE Fitness: High-Intensity Interval Training
- American College of Sports Medicine: For All-Day Metabolism Boost, Try Interval Training
- Columbia Health: Go Ask Alice: One Big Meal Versus Many Small Meals a Day
- University of Rochester Medical Center: Why Your Body Needs Water