Running Vs walking, it’s the age old debate that has people almost as split as choosing between Vanilla or Chocolate.
Runners are running for the same reasons people might go for a walk, or to a yoga class, or take up swimming. The endorphins that are released after a run, surmount to incredible increase in productivity and overall happiness levels. And whilst many are fortunate enough to have the stamina, endurance, physical capability and agility to run for fun, others are not as blessed and consider it a chore or as impossible as synchronised triple turn dive from a 500m diving board.
Running is more efficient, especially for the time poor. Calorie wise, a 20 minute run will obviously burn more than a 20 minute walk because of the amount of energy your body is exerting. It’s a better choice for people with a lighter build and finer, more agile bone structures, as the impact on your joints can be more than three times your body weight. Due to the endurance and movement needed for running, there is an old saying that says ‘running builds muscle whilst its counterpart focuses on maintaining muscle and weight’. Products for joint and muscle pain often help runners protect these vital skeletal organs and tissues, which often undergo the most physical strain.
Walking is great for any age and fitness level as it is easy and requires little agility and training. People with joint or muscle pain often opt for a walk as it gets the heart rate up with little to no physical strain. If you suffer from lower limb and spinal injuries, walking would be the safer option to achieve your physical activity goals.
So which one is right for you?
Unfortunately, there is no ‘one size fits all’ when it comes to choosing which form of exercise you “should or could” be doing. Many factors are at play such as your age, weight, build, existing fitness level, pre-existing joint or muscle issues, and your overall health and end goals.
If you’re getting back into exercise, don’t feel compelled to run 10km straight away or do an ‘Advanced’ pilates class after a 2 month break, then question why you can’t complete the movements or experience severe muscle pain the next day. Your body loses its fitness 5 times faster than it builds it (ludicrously unfair, I know), so if you’re getting back on the horse after some time off, just remember, slow and steady wins the race.
At the end of the day, any exercise is good exercise, and arguing over which is better to either party is about as useless as a pen without ink. That being said, it is of paramount importance that we are taking care of our bodies regardless of whether you’re a runner or a walker. Check out our running and walking articles in our blog here.