Although running to lose weight was not my initial goal, it turned out to be the best weight loss exercise program for women.
I loved the feeling of fitness. That urge to get moving and have fun in
activity. I was fit when I was younger, but for whatever reason, I
dropped off my jogging program. As a 50 plus woman, to recall the
energy, vitality and zest for life when I was younger was like
remembering an old friend I had lost touch with years ago. Perhaps you
have had the same experience.
It sparked the urge to start jogging again. I wanted a jogging revival, but first I knew my legs had to be stronger. Particularly when running for weight loss you already know you are carrying excess weight.
It is like using your car jack for your Toyota Corolla to lift up your husband’s Ford F150. The little jack could probably lift it at first, but is sure to be damaged. Perhaps not the best analogy, but my point is your muscles, knees and ankles need to be primed for the extra workload of running to lose weight.
I wanted to do exercises without equipment that would build my upper leg muscles. The quadriceps are needed to keep the knee in place. In fact running knee pain is often traced to weak supporting leg muscles that allow the knee to move out of its ideal location.
I decided on doing flights of stairs. If you have stairs, this is a good
option. A comparable gym equipment exercise would be the leg curl
machine. Alternatively, you could also do these at home by sitting on a
table and lifting a pail with a few books in it. You don’t get the same exercise and depression benefits from gym exercise as you do when you go jogging or even by taking the stairs.
After 2-3 weeks of exercise walking and flights of stairs, you are ready to start running to lose weight. Measure yourself out a 1-mile course. I do a loop so I am never too far from home. Reminds me of the old joke, “The trouble with jogging is that you are too far from home before you realize you are just not fit enough for this.” See why I like the loop?
Lace up your jogging shoes and go for a ½-mile warm up walk. Then start with a slow run or jogging lightly. Be sure to use the best running technique to avoid running injuries. The heel strike I learned in the 70’s is no longer considered the best running form. The change may make perfect sense to you if you are a former runner who often was sidelined with injury. Running is a natural activity so it shouldn’t hurt!
The plus point is that by changing or correcting your technique now, when just starting out it is easier than trying to break an entrenched bad habit down the road.
Running to lose weight can be successful with as little as 2-3 jogging days a week. I am still losing inches and I only average two jogging running days a week. I schedule weight loss exercises every day. It is jogging, walking or flights of stairs followed by running exercises.
With these exercises to lose weight, I still pay attention to eating healthy and see an improvement when I calculate my body mass index. Look up your number in the BMI table. You should eat lots of fresh fruits and vegetables putting the emphasis on veggies. Be sure to drink plenty of pure clean water particularly in warm weather.
I have now found my lost friend in running. Running to lose weight certainly is a benefit of jogging. However, my guess is that you too will find a friend in jogging before you have even met your weight loss goal.