You may be under the impression that they’re the same thing, or you may consider them completely different. While it is true that these two forms of cardiovascular exercise share many similarities, there are a few main differences that set them apart. The question remains, which is better for weight loss? It’s running vs. jogging, which one will come out on top?
Before we can name one of these two as the winner, we must go over their shared similarities and benefits. We’ll also address the distinct differences in form, intensity, and calories burned. Once we have all of the information, we can choose a winner!
Shared Health Benefits
Both running and jogging provide a number of incredible benefits, including:
- Increased Endurance and Stamina
- Improved Heart & Lung Health
- Aiding in Weight Loss
- Improved Mood
- Boosted Confidence
- Providing Better Sleep
- Improved Bone Density and Joint Health
- Fighting Disease
Differences in Form & Intensity
Running (and Sprinting)
Running requires a steady rhythm. Setting a pace at or above 8 mph is considered running. You’ll have a longer stride, faster arm movement, and your feet will hit the ground more often. The ball of your foot should always touch the ground first in order to avoid injury. You do not want to land on your heel.
These two forms of aerobic exercise require more power and less endurance. If you look at the appearance of a sprinter, you’ll notice they have extremely muscular thighs and calves. This is due to the muscular engagement required in order to achieve the appropriate pace and intensity. While extremely effective at weight loss, running and sprinting are more likely to cause injury to the feet, ankles, and knees, when compared to jogging.
Main Difference: The After-Burn Effect
After a running or sprinting session, your body requires more energy (calories) to recover. These forms of exercise place your body under a considerable amount of stress. You will continue using stored energy for up to 48 hours post workout, in order for your body to recover properly. What does this mean? Increased fat loss.
This moderately-paced form of aerobic exercise is performed between 3-7 mph, depending on the length of your legs. Joggers exhibit more of a bouncing movement. As with running, you should always land on the ball of your foot. Jogging can result in injury as well, but due to the slower pace, it is much less likely. Typically, this form of exercise is easier on the knees, as well.
Jogging requires greater endurance and less power. You will usually be able to jog for a lot longer than you’d be able to sprint. While marathon race participants are often referred to as runners, they are actually almost always joggers. On average, a marathon runner “runs” at 6 mph, qualifying them as more of a jogger. Marathon participants typically have very thin legs, as they go a longer distance at a slower pace.
Main Difference: Relieves Stress, Anxiety, and Depression
This is one of the main reasons that jogging is more beneficial than running. Running can place more stress on your body (and mind), while jogging has actually been proven to decrease these negative symptoms. Less stress = lower cortisol levels. Lower cortisol levels allow your body to let go of stored body fat more easily.
For equal comparison, the following examples are using a 150 pound person as a reference.
Running or sprinting at 10 mph burns 170 calories in 10 minutes or 17 calories per minute.
Jogging at 5 mph will burn 90 calories in 10 minutes or 9 calories per minute.
You may be thinking to yourself, okay, so running is clearly more efficient. Well, hold on. While you may burn more calories in 10 minutes of running than you would jogging, you must keep in mind that running uses up your energy, faster. You will be able to jog for a longer period of time. It is extremely unlikely that an average person would be able to maintain a 10 mph pace for longer than 10 minutes.
If you were to jog for 20-30 minutes at 5 mph, you would burn between 180 and 270 calories. With this information, it would appear that jogging is more beneficial, right?
If you are short on time and only have around 10 minutes, your best bet may be to run or sprint. If you have more time to devote to exercise, you should consider jogging. It’s easier on the body and can burn more calories over a longer period of time.
Back to the main question – running vs. jogging: which will help you lose weight faster? I have to be honest with you, it’s kind of a trick question.
Running burns more calories in a shorter amount of time, but you cannot keep it up as long. It does, however, produce the after-burn effect which helps to burn extra calories.
Jogging burns fewer calories in 10 minutes, but you can maintain the pace for a longer duration of time. It is also much easier on the body and mind.
Our Final Answer: We recommend combining the two for maximum results. This way, you’ll get the best of both worlds. You will reap the benefits of the workout itself, the after-burn effect, and it will be easier on your overall health.
We urge you to Slim Down with the Walk/Run Plan. This 6-week program is one of our most popular, for a good reason! It utilizes walking, jogging, and running, as well as cross-training, which can be anything from swimming to biking to skating to hiking! Switching up your workouts and exercises will not only keep you from getting bored but will also allow you to keep losing weight while maintaining safety.
You win whether you choose to walk, jog, run, sprint, or all of the above! If you’re just starting out, begin with jogging. See how you like it and progress from there. Combining these forms of exercise can be extremely beneficial to your weight loss goals and overall health.
Are you a Runner? Jogger? All of the above? Which one is your favourite form of aerobic exercise? Let us hear your thoughts in the comment section, below.