When your goal is to lose weight, you will want to burn as many calories as you can. This is because when you burn a greater number of calories than you take in from what you consume, you force your body into breaking down and using the extra fat you’re carrying. While running will cause you to burn a larger number of calories, weight training also has the capability of supporting your plan to lose weight.
The number of calories you burn every day depends on the number of calories you burn with physical activity, including the calories your body uses to fuel the function and maintenance of many body processes, which is referred to as your metabolic rate. To support your weight loss goals, you must make adjustments to increase both the calories you burned through exercise and your metabolic rate.
Running allows you to burn a high number of calories very quickly. How many calories it will burn depends on your body weight as well as the pace that you run at. Research has shown that a person weighing 180-pounds will burn about 691 calories in 60-minutes when running at 5 mph, which is about 821 calories when running at 6 mph and about 940 calories when running at 7 mph. With running alone, as long as a healthy eating plan is followed, a 180-pound person can burn 3,500 calories and thus lose a pound of fat every four to five 60-minute running workouts.
Lifting weights doesn’t burn as many calories as running while you’re participating in the workout. A person weighing 180-pounds will burn about 281 calories during a general 60-minute weight lifting workout, to about 497 calories during a vigorous 60-minute lifting session. However, weight training is the most effective way for putting on lean muscle. Studies have shown that the presence of lean muscle causes you to burn a greater number of calories throughout the day, because it takes more calories to maintain muscle tissue. Then you increase your metabolic rate and burn a larger number of calories throughout the day.
Many women shy away from lifting weights, particularly going heavier with them (more than 5-10 pounds) simply because they believe that doing so causes them to develop rippling muscles that make them look more masculine. This is an unfortunate misperception because the fact of the matter is that females do not have enough testosterone in their body to develop this degree of musculature naturally. Also, in order to build that type of muscle even with testosterone present, a great deal of food must be provided, something else women need to do.
What lifting heavy weights will do is raise their metabolic rate, promote greater fat burning, and help give them more definition when they do lose the body fat. What most women fear is actually what they should be doing.
Both running and weight training support a weight loss program, with each offering different benefits, but both resulting in an increase in daily calories burned. If you were to combine both exercise activities into your training sessions, you would be simultaneously burning a high number of calories with running, while speeding up your metabolic rate with weight training. If you only participate in one exercise type, as running will help you burn a greater number of calories, it’s the more efficient of the two for losing weight.
Clark. S, ‘Fat Loss Wars: Cardio Versus Weight Training!’, www.bodybuilding.com, November 04, 2015.
Nunley. K, ‘Weight Training Vs. Running for Weight Loss, www.livestrong.com August 19, 2015.