Running vs Walking for Fat Loss: Which One is Better?

Running vs Walking for Fat Loss: Which One is Better? is one of the most intriguing topics not for fitness enthusiasts but especially for those who are looking to lose weight and more specifically lose fat.

So want to know which exercise burns more fat? Running, or walking? And which one should they choose to see fat loss faster?

Well, when it comes to losing fat both form of exercise burns fat and overall calories.

Both have their pros and cons which need to be considered before jumping into any of these two exercises, or you may even plan to put both of these exercises into your weekly routine to see maximum results.

But this article is about to answer one specific question of which one is more efficient in fat burning.


Yes, it’s scientifically analyzed studies that shown that running burns more fat and especially those visceral fats which your belly area is surrounded by and is hard to get rid of.

So, here running seems to be a clear winner. Right!

But wait let’s delve deeper to understand the difference between these two exercises and for that let’s jump into the pros and cons of both exercises.

Running vs Walking

What are the pros and cons of running/sprinting?

There are plenty of benefits that are associated with running and the most obvious one is that it can help you lose weight and above all help to lose fat.

Running burns more calories in a shorter amount of time than walking for long hours, which may mean you can finish the session in a shorter amount of time and then can jump into your other tasks.

As running involves large muscle groups like quads and hamstring to give that push and the upper body part is also activated during a run, which leads to greater calorie burn.

Running can be done without paying any cost for it like you may choose to run at parks, outdoors, or even at home if you have enough space for it.

Running in outdoors can not only be effective to lose fat but can be one of the great ways to combat stress or anxiety which in turn helps in improving mental health.

In addition to fat loss and fighting stress, running can also provide other benefits if done regularly like it can increase lung capacity, helps in stronger bones, and improve cardiovascular health.

Running vs Walking

Running can also help to lower resting blood pressure.

When it comes to losing fat while performing running helps to release a special hormone that increases the fat-burning process and one of the other benefits is it specifically targets the visceral fat.

Studies have shown that running increases the level of a hormone called catecholamine in the blood that triggers fat burning, and the body gets the signal to use fat for fuel rather than carbohydrates.

Running can also help in preventing cancer.

On the other hand, running does come with its own drawbacks.

One of these drawbacks is the risk of injury and wear and tear to bones and ligaments.

Running is an intense form of exercise that puts a lot of pressure on your joints and increases your risk for injuries like pulled muscles or ligament tears especially if you don’t stretch or warm up before a run.

A part from heavy on your bones and muscles or ligaments and it can drain you out within a few minutes of performing a run.

This means doing it every day or 3 to 4 times a week can become very stressful and can be very grueling if you don’t give proper recovery time to your body.

Another drawback since prolong running like a marathon can put you in a situation that can lead to sudden cardiac events like cardiac arrest, albeit this is not very common.

Further after high-intensity training like running if you don’t give your body time to recover it can elevate the cortisol “the stress hormone” which can further cause heart problems.

Therefore it is recommended to take proper rest and sleep after intense workouts.

What are the pros and cons of Walking?

Walking has been one of the most effective forms of exercise that are not only easy compared to other forms of exercise but can reap great benefits to human health.

Studies have shown that there are numerous benefits attached to walking.

It is the perfect exercise for everything from weight loss to heart health, from alleviating stress to fighting cancer.

As we know walking is slower than running, but here lies the benefit of not fatiguing out which is the case with running.

It keeps your heart rate stable and does not rise up quickly like running or sprinting.

This means you can walk long distances without exhausting much and wearing yourself out.

Walking at a brisk pace for a longer time duration can burn a good amount of calories even though not as effective as running but it keeps you going at an easy pace.

Running vs Walking

It also has way less wear-and-tear on your joints or ligaments when compares to running.

Plus you can perform walking regularly and very much every other day as it requires less recovery time.

So if you’re looking to drop pounds without worrying about serious injury risks walking can be very effective to do this job.

When it comes to the downside of walking. One is that it often takes a long time to complete a walking session.

Another con of walking is, that it burns fewer calories when compared to other forms of training like weight training or sprinting.

Further sprinting can create after burn effect which means your body continues to burn fats even after you are done with the sprinting.

This is not the case with walking as it only burns calories when you are performing it.

Key takeaways

Here are a few facts about running and walking that can help you decide which activity to do for fat loss.

Running has been shown to be better than walking when it comes to fat loss.

Running helps to continue burning calories even after you finish the session, which does not happen with walking.

So for maximum fat loss running surpasses walking.

Walking is less intense hence less strenuous and easy on the body and can be performed without wearing yourself out.

Running if done vigorously for a longer period like in a marathon can pose some risks related to cardiac health.

What does the research say about running versus walking for fat loss?

There has been plenty of research that has been carried out that compares running versus walking to determine which one produces better results when it comes to fat loss.

Ultimately, the results have shown that running burns fats significantly higher as compared to walking.

Walking on the other hand burns less fat but is less stressful on the body and can be done regularly and is more suitable for obese people to lose fat.

Important points to consider

There are some important points to consider when choosing which one might be better.

Like your current fitness status, if you are obese you may probably choose walking, especially at the beginning of your fat loss journey.

Sprinting can be very taxing on the body if you are obese and can do more harm than good, like wear and tear or physical injury.

If you are touching the overweight limit and want to lose fat fast and get back to shape then sprinting can give you the bang for the buck.

 Also if you have any underlying health issue, especially that is related to your heart then walking should be the one to choose to avoid any over-exertion.

Another thing to consider is your time, If you are a person who stays busy due to your professional or personal duties and often fails to find enough time for any physical activity.

Then sprinting can solve the problem by saving your time, as it requires less time to complete the session and vice versa.



Both running and walking have their own importance when it comes to fat loss.

However, if you’re looking to burn fat faster then running is the one to choose.

 Walking comes with its own benefit and also helps in fat loss, plus it does not wear you out which makes it ideal to follow regularly.

But if you are someone who does not have any underlying health condition and looking to carve out the fat.

It is recommended to follow both the running and walking with separate days assigned for each of these exercise protocols.

And last but not least to expedite the fat loss results, follow a clean but flexible diet plan to achieve the desired result.

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