Posted by: Vikram | 2008/08/26

Burning Calories: Walking v/s jogging

Over the same distance, say 3 miles, which form or exercise helps burn more calories, walking or jogging, and why?

I am of the opinion that if I were to walk 3 miles fairly briskly, I will burn more calories rather than jogging. Am I correct?

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Our expert says:
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Hi there

Jogging burns more, because the intensity is higher. Though it's a slightly grey area. A typical RATE of burning energy is about 15 kCal/min during running, whereas walking will burn maybe 6kCal/min.

So walking 5km briskly, you'd probably take about 45 minutes. That's about 300 kCal. If you ran that distance, it would take you perhaps 25 minutes, and you'd be burning 375 kCal. If you ran it faster, and took 20 minutes, then you'd find that you'd burn much more per minute (up to 20 kCal per min) and your energy use would be 400kCal.

So it's not a perfectly linear relationship, but in general, the faster you go, the better it is in terms of total energy burned, BUT ONLY if you go for long enough. For example, if you ran 4 km, then walking 5km would be better, simply in terms of the numbers.

I must just point out that this "numbers" game is probably not the ideal way to do things. You can get into awful trouble by trying to plan the session simply to maximize calories burned - not the ideal way. So rather look at getting the intensity and the duration right without preoccupation with the numbers - if you can't finish a 5km run then stick to walking - the objective is to get 45 to 60 minutes of exercise in per day, and so that is a good objective to aim for.

good luck

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