Whether you’re a runner who wants to drop a few pounds or someone who just wants to start running as a new healthy lifestyle, running for weight loss can be tricky.
If you want to start running for weight loss, it’s important you take the right steps in the beginning to make sure you don’t injure yourself. Because an injury will only take you further away from your goal of losing weight.
Do it the Right Way!
Many people believe overweight people shouldn’t run because of the effect it might have on their joints. And while there’s some truth to that, running can be a great way to lose weight if you do it the right way.
I personally think if you’re really overweight, running as your only weight loss technique might not be the best option for you.
If you are really overweight, the best thing to do to lose weight fast it to mix your running routine with dieting. That’s how it will work well.
But your run should be minimal at the beginning so you don’t injure yourself, because there’s nothing worse than starting a weight loss program and having to stop because of an injury that could have been avoided.
Studies have shown that people who run consistently are leaner than those who do the same amount of other exercises. (1)
Even if there were no studies showing this truth, it’s with common sense we see that people who run all the time are way healthier, and leaner than those that don’t do any form of active physical exercise.
Running is good though, but it’s important you do it the right way for your body.
So, How do You Run Without Injuring Yourself?
1. Consult Your Doctor Before You Start Running for Weight Loss
Most people don’t do this and end up being at risk of causing their body some serious injury because running can be rough on the body, depending on how you do it. Like I said before, you should run in a way that’s right and safe for your body.
Running is also amazing for your heart, mental state and your overall well being, but it might not be the kind of exercise that’s right for you right now.
Meet your doctor. Let him or her check you out. Your heart, your blood pressure, any injuries you might have had in the past, diseases, medications and any other thing he or she thinks might be important.
You will also need to change the way you eat.
You can’t keep eating all the junk food and hope running will fix it.
Ask your doctor or see a nutritionist for advice about dieting so you can get the best professional opinion possible.
2. Invest in Good Running Outfits
You are going to need a good pair of running shoes if you are to make sure you don’t get any kind of running injury.
I use to run with a pair of shoes that were not made for running and after each run I noticed my tibia (shinbone) started throbbing. I thought maybe its the way I ran but as soon as I changed them for better running shoes, I noticed the throbbing stopped.
Good running shoes also helps in aligning your back so you don’t mess it up.
Your best bet is to find a good store that specializes in athletic gears and they’ll help you find the right pair of running shoes.
The clothes you wear while running can also make or break you when trying to develop a regular running habit.
If you have a body type that is on the fluffy side, you might want to try compression shirts and pants. They can help with chafing, reduce swelling and soreness, increase oxygenation and speed up the recovery process.
If you normally overheat and chafing is never an issue with you, then you can get breathable clothing that will remove the sweat and keep them off your skin.
3. Start Slowly and Work Your Way Up to Running for Weight Loss
You may be excited to start something new, like starting your own routine of running for weight loss, but to prevent the issue of injury, it’s important you ease yourself into your running program, especially if you are on the heavy side.
This is because running is hard on the bones and joints. It increases the density of your bone but if you start too early too fast, you can get stress fractures and shin splints. (2)
It’s best you start out with a little stretch, to loosen up your muscles.
Then, start with a walk… a run… a walk… and a run until you feel comfortable running for a long time.
It goes like this:
- Stretch your body before your run to loosen you up
- Walk for about 5-10 minutes to get warmed up
- Run for about 15-30 minutes. Again, depending on your might. Don’t over-do it yet.
- Walk for about 5-10 minutes again.
- Then run about 30 minutes
- End your run with a 5 minute walk to cool down
The times you run and walk can be adjusted depending on the state of your body and the advice your doctor gave you. If you know your body can handle a one hour run, according to your doctor, then you can run as you want. And the only measurement you will use will be your level of endurance. But still, you should be realistic and do ONLY what your body can handle.
4. Hire a Running Coach
It can be hard to summon the motivation to do the necessary things to lose weight; and when you are on your own, it is really difficult. It’s very tempting to skip days and snuggle under the covers for some extra shut-eye.
That’s why you will need a running coach.
It depends on how bad you want it.
Beginning any exercise routine is usually a big commitment, especially if you are not someone who does any physical activity. What you’re doing is creating a new healthy habit that you’ll continue to do even after you’ve lost weight.
When you work out with a running coach, it motivates you to run in a proper way and also makes sure you run even if you don’t feel like running.
Your running coach will be like your personal trainer. They’ll help you set up your running schedule that fits your needs and help you lose weight safely. They can also recommend exercises that will reduce your risk of getting yourself injured.
5. Eat Enough Lean Proteins and Healthy carbs
If you are new to running, you might not know how important food is for this particular type of exercise.
If you don’t eat and have calories to burn, you’ll be burning away your muscles
You should eat plenty of lean proteins and fresh fruits and vegetables, but don’t skip the carbs. Your body needs the fuel to burn and if it doesn’t have any fuel to burn, it starts burning through your muscles… which ain’t good for your health.
More Ways to Lose Weight Without Stress?
If you really want to lose weight and you are still skeptical about running, you can purchase our 30-Days Fat Loss Program where you have different programs for weight loss that does not include running.
Some of them you don’t have to do anything strenuous but only make a few dietary changes and all will be well.