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Losing Weight By Running

Posted by: on June, 10 2013
Seen on LiveStrong.com and written by Amy Hunter
Running is an effective tool for weight loss. Not only does running burn calories, it also strengthens your muscles, boosts your mood and reduces the incidence of weight-related conditions such as type 2 diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Any time your feet hit the pavement, you are burning calories, but you can boost the number of calories you burn by running and speed weight loss by putting together a running workouts. It is easy to fall into a routine of jogging a comfortable of couple miles daily. This type of exercise is better than nothing, but to get the most benefit from running, develop a program where you do something different several days each week.

Interval Workouts

There are several ways to add interval workouts to your running program. Head to your local track and run intervals. An interval consists of running hard a short distance, such as 200 meters, and then slowing to a walk or jog for an additional 200 meter recovery period. Repeat, gradually increasing the number of intervals in your workout.
Another type of interval is called a fartlek, which is the Swedish word for speed play. While running, look ahead for a landmark, such as a telephone pole. Run hard to that point, then slow to a recovery jog. Continue intermittent sprints and recoveries throughout your run.

Hill Workouts

Hill workouts are an effective way to strengthen the lower body as well as boost the intensity of your workout. A hill workout can be as simple as changing your route to incorporate more hills, or it can involve running hill repeats. To run a hill repeat, find a hill that takes you about one minute to run from bottom to top. After warming up, run hard to the top of the hill, turn and jog or walk to the bottom. Repeat, gradually increasing the number of repeats you complete.

Add a Long Run

Dedicate yourself to one long run each week. Increase the distance gradually, by about 10 percent each week. Covering extra miles burns more calories, and running longer increases cardiovascular fitness which makes it easier to run intensely on your other running days. Ultimately, it is up to you about how long your long run should be. Someone training for a marathon may work up to a 20-mile weekly long run, but for weight loss benefits, a weekly long run that is between 60 and 90 minutes will produce results.

Add Weights

Running is a great way to burn calories, but to really drop weight fast, add two or three weight lifting workouts each week. Lifting weights helps you maintain muscle mass, which is often lost during a weight loss program. It also strengthens the muscles involved in running, making it possible to run harder during your workouts. Finally, lifting weights helps offset imbalances that may develop from a running routine.