Exercise! - Running versus Walking

View Full Version : Running versus Walking

12-04-2010, 11:09 PM
I'm curious to hear the opinion of people.....I was told tonight by someone that running three miles in 30 minutes is essentially the same from a calorie burning standpoint as walking three miles in 60 minutes. Is that true?

And I'd also like to hear if anyone has some good suggested regimens to build up jogging endurance. Years ago, I used to jog about three miles a day, but there was almost nothing to it since my weight was about 200 pounds. Now I'm trying to figure out how to get myself back to running without killing my knees. Is there a good weight to start jogging again...something that wouldn't be so hard on my body? And if so, how should I build up to it?

12-04-2010, 11:20 PM
For starting you run you just have to see if your body can handle it. There is no magic number to start. I started a few weeks ago doing very short intervals. I walk for a few minutes, run for 30 seconds, walk another minute. And keep that up for a while. Now I try to run for 45 seconds and I'll just keep increasing.

There is a very popular program called C25k (couch to five k). Google it or there are plenty of topics about it. I believe that has you starting out running one minute at a time.

12-05-2010, 09:36 AM
I heard this too and though I'm not certain, it makes sense. Running is more intense so you get more bang for your buck in less time.

12-05-2010, 10:28 AM
Honestly...I would not run at over 300 lbs...I think it's waaaayyy to much for the knees/joints. I'd stick with non-weight bearing exercises until the lbs dropped a bit.

I started to run at 209 lbs and I remember it being MURDER on my knees at first...so I ended up doing more walking than running (30 sec. run, 2 min walk & repeat). As I drop the lbs, running has gotten a whole lot easier on my joints (running 3.5 miles 4 times/week).

Even now I alternate with non-weight bearing cardio like the recumbent bike and eliptical.

I'm no expert, and have no facts to support this, other than my own personal experience. Hope this helps anyways!:)

12-05-2010, 10:39 AM
I do believe walking a mile or running a mile do burn the same calories. You are essentially doing the same work. Running just gets it done faster, and is better for cardiovascular fitness because it makes your heart work harder.

12-05-2010, 11:06 AM
I used a couple of online calorie counters. It states that a 300 pound person who walks 3 miles in an hour burns 477 calories and a 300 pound person who runs 3 miles in 30 minutes burns 673 calories.

12-05-2010, 12:39 PM
Thanks to everyone for the responses! I've been doing some reading, and it sounds like running always burns more calories than walking, even if the same distance is covered. According to some of the things I have read, it is because the amount of energy exerted to keep your body at a high pace simply requires more calories. I suppose it's like a car with gas...a moderate speed is more efficient with fuel than a high rate of speed. Getting somewhere faster simply takes more.

All of the insight is greatly appreciated. I'll definitely check out the C25k program. (Thanks, Amanda!) I hadn't heard of that. As some of you havce suggested, I think it's best to just listen to my body and gradually push toward more running when it's possible.

Thanks again to everyone, and good luck on all of your journeys!

Alenna 52
12-05-2010, 12:44 PM
You can do both! Pick a distance (say 2 miles) and start by mostly walking, with an occasional 15-30 second jog. For example - 2 minutes walking, 30 seconds running, 2 minutes walking, 30 seconds running etc. Check out Jeff Galloway's run/walk programs - they'll take you all the way up to a marathon if you want.

After doing this for 3 or 4 sessions, decrease the walking time - 1 minute walking, 30 seconds running. Continue to gradually increase running and decrease walking and eventually (after a month or two), you will be mostly running, and you can increase your distance to 3 miles (if you want).

Just take it easy in the beginning so you don't get injured. And walking means at a "brisk" pace. I've actually walked faster than some people jog.

12-06-2010, 11:59 AM
I do believe walking a mile or running a mile do burn the same calories. You are essentially doing the same work. Running just gets it done faster, and is better for cardiovascular fitness because it makes your heart work harder.

Yeah, I have heard the same thing.

12-06-2010, 09:03 PM

12-06-2010, 11:25 PM
Thanks, MariaMaria! Absolutely fantastic article.

12-09-2010, 10:12 PM
Physics says that moving the same mass a specific distance, is the same amount of work. But a human body is not like rolling a barrel for a mile. :)

You convert more oxygen in your bloodstream running than walking. You heat up more, and expell more water through sweat and increased breathing. So running really does burn more calories.