It is well known that regular cardio is part of a healthy lifestyle. Although there are many forms of cardio, running and walking are the most common. The question is, which is better? Both running and walking have pros and cons, so the final answer will be different for every person. Here are some points to consider.
American Heart Association research shows that you can reduce your risk of certain diseases, such as high blood pressure, diabetes, cancer and high cholesterol with brisk walking just as much as you can with running. Another research study analyzed the health of thousands of runners and walkers mainly in their 40s and 50s. The study found that, mile for mile, brisk walking can lower the risk of diabetes, high cholesterol and high blood pressure as much as running does.
Although you can garner many of the same health benefits from walking, people who run expend 2.5 times more energy running than walking, regardless of whether that’s on the track or treadmill. Running clearly is the winner over walking from a weight loss perspective. A research study compared over 30,000 runners from the National Runners’ Health Study with 15,000 walkers from the National Walkers’ Health Study. Over approximately six years, they discovered that calories burned through running led to 90 percent more weight loss than calories burned through walking.
Your Physical Condition
Running is a higher intensity exercise and presents more of a chance of injury such as knee pain, shin splints or back pain. Research has shown that walkers sustain fewer injuries than runners over long periods of time. If you already suffer from knee or back problems opting for a walk instead of a run might be a better choice for you.
If you enjoy both running and walking, you can certainly alternate between the two. The most important thing is to make sure that cardio is a part of your exercise routine in whichever form you choose. Regular cardio, of any kind, can help keep the body healthy, not to mention improve your mood and energy levels. No matter which you choose, ask your NexGen Fitness trainer about a heart rate monitor and the NexGen INSPIRE™ to use while walking or running to ensure that you stay within your target heart rate zone, ensuring that you get the maximum benefit from your workout.