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Article: What is better for losing weight: gym or running?

running vs gym for weight loss

What is better for losing weight: gym or running?

In general, weight loss happens when you shed calories faster than you take in. There has been a long debate on whether cardiovascular workout like running is more likely to yield faster and efficient strength training results in the gym. Running has the potential to burn calories before you know it. However, the long-term benefits of gyming aren't less either.

Therefore, to make sure you spend your time and effort on something that can truly help you reach your goals, we have thoroughly researched and collated this comparison guide of running vs. gym to answer all of your swarming questions in just 5 minutes.

Why is Weight Loss Important?

You are always happy indulging in your favorite fast foods until you start to notice physical difficulties in your daily life. Once you start to experience that, the first thing you should be doing is to find a way to lose pounds most safely and responsibly possible efficiently.

Get lower cholesterol

Reducing as much as 5% of weight can reduce tremendous amounts of cholesterol to eliminate potential health problems in the future.

Lower blood pressure and allows your heart to do relatively less work

Frequent cardio like running is an excellent way to exercise your heart and reduce your heart's overall pressure. According to national guidelines, as far as blood pressure is concerned, you drop systolic pressure of around 5 to 20 pounds every time you shed 20 pounds.

Improved Mental Health

Now that was it for your physical satisfaction, numerous benefits are resulting from losing weight. It allows you to wake up everyday content with yourself, get a child-like sleep, and be overall confident in your body.

Now, what's something that can yield the best results?


Running has the potential to burn calories faster than any other method out there. That said, a 150-pound man will likely lose around 590 calories in the running for 60 minutes. This means you can easily lose 1 or 2 pounds every week if you aim to go for the same pace and running duration.

However, these calories can vary depending on how many breaks you take between the 60-minute running session, mileage, intensity, incline, and at which pace you are running daily. Other than that, have you wondered why some people don't gain weight regardless of whatever they eat and you, on the other hand, can see yourself losing your shape every week?

The root of the problem lies in having a slow metabolism. Unfortunately, this problem can also be eliminated by only staying consistent with your regular running. This boosts your metabolism, which speeds up the overall weight loss process.


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Considering how in strength training you carry out intense workouts and frequent breaks, it reduces the type of effect constantly running has on our bodies. To state it specifically, an average 150-pound man will lose about 220 calories in a 60-minute session of strength training and 440 calories for those intense days.

However, as you do this, you tend to grow more lean muscle, which can reduce a more significant number of calories even while you're resting. How? During strength training, your body requires calories to maintain its muscle tissues. So, where these calories usually result in fat and weight gain, they can be used up to build your muscles. As a result, you increase your metabolic rate to speed up the whole fat loss journey.

Research is done to test the effects of cardio like aerobic and running, HIIT, and weight training indicated that people who carried out 30 minutes of HIIT every day burned 25-30% more calories than people who opted for other workout methods.

Many people nowadays make it effortless to carry out these intense workouts only by getting their hands on highly comfortable gym leggings that provide flexibility during the sessions and instantly elevate your gym style.

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Gym vs. running: which is better for weight loss?

Now that you're fully aware of the fundamentals, it's time we answer the question you came here for in the first place. Both of these workout methods are indeed excellent for losing weight. However, the way they trigger and burn those stubborn pounds is what gives one an upper hand over the other. Here's everything you need to know to decide which method works best for you.

How fast it takes to lose weight?

Let's get some facts straight.

500 grams of fat is equal to 3500 calories. This means if you manage to have a deficit of 3500 calories in a week, it won't take too long until you start to lose 1 or 2 pounds per week. This means cutting down around 500 to 1,000 calories in your diet and increasing your overall physical activity to burn more calories.

The speed at which you lose weight varies drastically in these two workout types. Where running allows you to constantly carry out a physical activity and drains you by the end of the session, gyming is a relaxed way of losing weight. Therefore, running is known to quickly shed pounds within a few weeks, whereas gyming allows you to have better long-term results.

Calorie Tracking

When it comes to losing weight, you must focus on how many calories you burn each day. Here, running can be a little difficult to track, making it a little harder to take the necessary actions. We are sure you've been in this situation: you come back from a good run and immediately hit the kitchen to fill yourself up with goodies to reward the progress for the day. When you continuously use your energy, your body will quickly lose up the energy, which will result in more hunger.

Therefore, it gives a false satisfaction of the number of calories you've burned, and you tend to underestimate the number of calories you're consuming. In reality, you are only burning the normal amount of calories but losing more energy at a time which gives you an impression of a calorie deficit.

On the other hand, gyming revolves around providing high-intensity workouts followed by frequent breaks, so you don't lose your energy as rapidly as running. As a result, you end up consuming fewer calories after the workout.


If we specifically talk about workouts that can help lose weight, it must be High-intensity interval training (HIIT). They involve short periods of intense workouts where you use up all your energy and push your body to its limits to complete a specific period.

Later, you take frequent breaks between these high-intensity sessions to ensure you don't tire yourself out at the end of the training. These intervals are usually 20 to 90 seconds long with longer breaks for around the total workout time of 20 minutes to yield maximum results.

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Calories Burned Per Hour

Although we have touched on this concept earlier, it needed more emphasis to help you grab the idea better. You can expect to lose around 300 calories in a one-hour workout session at the gym and twice as this for an hour-long running session.

The reason is that both of these workouts use different approaches to yield the same results but only at different periods. Working out at a hard level on the treadmill has the potential to burn 705 to 865 calories in only an hour. At the same time, strength training works but slowly uses your calories for muscle mass and maintains weight in the long run.

Variety of Workouts

Many people fail to understand that doing the same repetitive workouts results in less efficiency and calories burned than going for a variety of workouts. A good example of that is running. Once you get used to running at a constant high speed in the same amount of time, regardless of how much you sweat, you will burn fewer calories than you initially did with the same workout.

In this situation, you can do two things: either keep switching up your running routine like pace, inline and workout duration or incorporate various other workouts to help increase the efficiency and metabolic level.


Now coming to the end of the comparison, it is recommended that you alternate between running and gym workouts to get maximum results. By doing cardio, you can keep the blood flowing and improve your training's overall speed and endurance. Whereas gyming can be used to cut down fat and use the calories consumed to build lean muscles rather than further increase your weight.

Many fitness enthusiasts prefer to mix and match their sessions each week. Remember, you also don't want to keep the same routine for too long. However, if you aren't fond of a specific workout, there is nothing wrong with choosing a workout that can help you enjoy each moment of your workout. The concept of exercising is more about having a healthy lifestyle that you also enjoy sticking to daily. Therefore, we would recommend you give enough time to each and decide the one that works best for you.

If you are happy with both, it's never a bad idea to go for two days of running and three days of gyming to get the best weight loss results.

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