Pedestrians say walking is better for the heart, runners say running increases endurance.
One study found that male and female athletes can live several years longer than non-runners. Of course, jogging uses the body more than walking, giving you faster results.
A few studies have also shown that running is more effective for people seeking to lose weight. To reduce belly fat (or visceral fat), experts recommend choosing short runs according to a workout routine, according to Medical daily.
“Losing visceral fat, even without losing weight, can improve overall health”, said Dr. Carol Ewing Garber, a professor of biological research at Columbia University of Education (USA). “Running is often a big step in walking, so it’s best to add it to your routine and practice it gradually”.
But research also suggests that runners may be at a higher risk of injury than pedestrians. People with arthritis or joint problems should seek medical advice because running can exacerbate the condition by adding joint stress.
James O’Keefe, a cardiologist at Saint Luke’s Central American Heart Institute, says running too much can be harmful because our bodies are unable to sustain the activities that require more than endurance.
“After 60 minutes of intense physical activity, like running, the heart chambers begin to stretch and exceed the adaptive capacity of the muscles”, he said.
In one study, walking was nearly as effective as running in reducing the risk of hypertension, high cholesterol, diabetes and heart disease. Those who want to reap the benefits of walking can also consider doing activities on hill trails or up and downstairs, according to Medical daily.
For obese adults, using a moderately inclined treadmill may be the best option. A 2011 study concluded that walking at a relatively slow pace is a potential exercise strategy that can reduce the risk of musculoskeletal injury and reduce pathology while appropriate cardiovascular stimulation in obese people.
Cardiologist Peter Schnohr has proposed combining these two activities to get the best results for your health. “The most favorable mode is 2 to 3 days of running each week, at a slow or moderate speed. Running every day, at a fast pace, more than 4 hours per week is not favorable”, he said.
Increasing the intensity with brisk walking can also be the perfect choice for those who do not want to run. One study found that people who walked at a faster pace reduced their risk of death compared to those who walked at a slow pace, according to Medical daily.