Running two miles a day might have you huffing and puffing, but it won't lead to fast weight loss. Exercise doesn't burn as many calories as you might think; the combination of diet and exercise will do more for you than exercise alone.
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At a pace of five miles per hour, you burn approximately 192 to 284 calories per workout. Since you need to burn 3,500 calories to lose one pound of body weight, you would need 12 to 18 sessions to lose one pound.
Running Two Miles a Day
The calories you burn running two miles will depend on your weight and how fast you go. If a 125-pound person jogs at a pace of five miles per hour, which is a 12-minute mile, Harvard Health Publishing estimates they will burn 480 calories per hour. At the same pace, a 185-pound person will burn 710 calories per hour. If you stop at two miles, this works out to approximately 192 to 284 calories burned during your workout.
If you increase your pace to six miles per hour, a 125-pound person burns 600 calories per hour, and a 185-pound person burns 888 calories per hour. Calories burned per hour increases to 750 per hour for the 125-pound individual and 1,110 per hour for the 185-pound individual running eight-minute miles, or 7.5 miles per hour.
How to Lose Weight
You need to burn 3,500 calories to lose a single pound, advises the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. If you don't change your diet at all and jog two miles per day at a five mile per hour pace, it will take around 12 to 18 days for your weight to drop by one pound. If you cut 300 calories per day from your diet, and jog those two miles as well, you can lose a pound a week.
You can also increase your rate of weight loss by making small changes to increase your daily activity level. If you live near where you shop or work, try walking instead of driving, or park at the far end of the parking lot. Take the stairs rather than the elevator or escalator. If watching TV is a part of your daily routine, try exercising or stretching while you watch your favorite shows.
Adjusting Your Diet
When you start an exercise program, be sure you don't increase your caloric intake and cancel out the weight loss benefits of your jog. As a general guideline, women between the ages of 30 and 50 need approximately 1,800 calories to maintain their weight, while men in the same age group need 2,200 calories, advises Medline Plus.
Cut calories from your diet to increase your rate of weight loss. When changing your diet, try to make small, sustainable changes rather than attempting a crash diet for weight loss. Keep a food diary to help you recognize unhealthy eating patterns such as skipping meals, always eating dessert or eating too many snacks.
Then, replace your unhealthy habits with healthy ones. For example, plan meals ahead of time to ensure you make healthy choices. Remove candy and desserts from your home to decrease your temptation to eat them. Eat slowly and stop eating when you are satisfied, even if you haven't cleaned your plate.
- Harvard Health Publications: "Calories Burned in 30 Minutes for People of Three Different Weights"
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: "Participant Guide: Burn More Calories Than You Take In"
- Medline Plus: "Exercise and Activity for Weight Loss"
- Centers for Disease Control and Prevention: "Improving Your Eating Habits"