Which is more effective in terms of weight loss? Is it better to walk or run? Every year, millions of Americans pledge to lose weight, only to gain it back the following year. Is it because they did anything wrong or because their character and willpower are lacking? Many people believe that if there is no suffering, there is no gain, and that we must suffer in order to get success.
But, in terms of weight loss and fat burning, is it actually how it works, or is it more of a cultural conditioning that we are more deserving of success if we suffer first? well You will understand the truth about how it works in this essay. So that you can lose weight the next time. It’s something you can accomplish once and for all.
So the concept of losing weight and burning fat through activity such as walking or running is built on the principle that we must expend energy, that we must burn energy or calories, and that some of that energy is then stored as fat. We should burn fat if we expend more energy than we consume, which makes obvious, but it’s not that straightforward.
Source of Energy
So let’s take a look at where that energy comes from first. What difference does it make whether we’re walking or running?
That’s all right. The two methods through which the body generates energy are referred to as
- Oxidative phosphorylation
Oxidative phosphorylation . It’s a huge word, but it essentially means that humans generate energy while surrounded by oxygen. It indicates we have enough oxygen to deliver the fuel to a structure called a mitochondria, which uses oxygen to oxidize the fuel, which may be fat or glucose.
We’ll create fuel if there’s enough oxygen available. We’re going to create ATP, which stands for adenosine triphosphate (adenosine triphosphate). That’s simply cell currency. Actually, it doesn’t make a difference. We can produce 38 units of ATP from one unit of glucose, and because fat is a bigger molecule, we make more than 38 ATPs, but that’s not really essential.
It’s a really efficient means of producing energy, and we can create a lot of ATP in the presence of oxygen, with all of the oxidation taking place in the mitochondria.
Because it is the body’s preferred and most efficient method of producing energy, and because the body prefers to employ that process at rest and at moderate levels of exercise, the body prefers to use fat for fuel at rest for our basal metabolic rate (BMR) and for low intensity exercise.
We get around 85% of our energy from fat and 15% from glucose in this process, but both of those fuel sources are directed into the mitochondria, where oxygen is used to produce ATP.
Okay, the alternative method of generating energy is known as glycolysis, and it is made up of two parts glucose. Glyco means sugar, and lysis means to divide or break apart, which is exactly what this is. When we don’t have enough oxygen or when it’s not available in appropriate amounts, the body turns to glycolysis to keep us alive. It begins to break carbohydrates, which does not occur in the mitochondria.
This is an unique mechanism. It occurs in the cytoplasm of the cell, but not in the mitochondria. This is inefficient, as we can only produce two ATPs from a single unit of glucose. As a result, when we have oxygen, we can produce 19 times more energy than when we don’t. As a result, this is a means of generating energy in an emergency. It’s necessary in a crisis, such as when we don’t have enough oxygen or need to run, when there’s an emergency, or when we need to flee from something, to have a backup fuel.
We have a backup energy generation system, but it is inefficient. To produce a particular amount of fuel, we must consume a large amount of glucose, which accounts for 100% of the process of glycolysis. As a result, the process is known as glycolysis. It’s all about sugar; it won’t help you lose weight.
What happens in them?
So, if you’re intending to walk or run to burn fat and lose weight, we’d need to know whether oxidative phosphorylation or glycolysis occurs more frequently when walking or running. And how can you find the right balance? So, how does that function in practice? When can we burn the most fat, because it is our ultimate goal?
When we walk in a natural manner while doing aerobic activity, we are not stressing our breathing. So there’s something called aerobic metabolism, which basically means walking and breathing in a normal manner, and we’re going to assume that when you’re walking, you’re walking at a pace that’s below 120 beats per minute, because at that heart rate, most people will be breathing normally and won’t be huffing and puffing excessively. You’ll be taking deep breathes in and out at a consistent pace, and you won’t be huffing and puffing.
What exactly does that imply? That implies you have enough oxygen when you’re not huffing and puffing, and you’re delivering enough oxygen to the mitochondria to keep oxidative phosphorylation going without having to start breaking sugar.
Because of the aerobic metabolism, any action that isn’t as severe as huffing and puffing will burn the most of your fuel from fat, especially if you’re already fat adapted.
What is fat adaptation?
Fat adaption is a long-term metabolic change in which your body burns fat instead of carbohydrates for energy. It’s often regarded as one of the keto diet’s advantages. Reduced cravings, more energy, and better sleep are all said to be benefits of fat adaption.
So if you’re fat adapted, you’re probably burning around 85% fat and 15% glucose, but this isn’t glycolysis, so the glucose is still going into the mitochondria for oxidation.
As you increase your effort, the percentage of glucose in your blood will rise slightly, but not dramatically, because you are still primarily using oxygen.
When we run we stress our breathing , we can hardly breath after a fast run which is under anaerobic exercise.
However, once you enter anaerobic conditions and begin to huff and puff, there is no longer enough oxygen to give the mitochondria with adequate fuel and oxygen to maintain this Oxidative Phosphorylation. As a result, we can no longer rely only on this.
As a result, the body will begin to break down glucose. Glycolysis will be the first step. It’ll start breaking down sugar molecules. Because this is pointless. We’re going to burn through a lot of carbs really rapidly.
Nothing in the body is ever zero or one hundred percent. There’s always a variety of Pathways and activities to choose from. But we can be sure that if you’re fat adapted and doing aerobatics, you’re getting the vast majority of your fuel from fat, but as soon as you start huffing and puffing, glucose takes over. The intensity will determine how dominant it becomes, but pretty much as soon as you start huffing and puffing, you’ll be using more glucose and carbohydrate than fat.
Many people believe that it’s all about calories, that No pain, no gain, that if I burn more calories and run faster, I’ll burn more fat. Unfortunately, this isn’t the case because you can’t burn more fat than your body can oxygenate.
Only oxygen can be used to burn fat. As a result, you can only burn fat until you reach the aerobic threshold. Then you won’t be able to do that because that mechanism won’t activate, but it won’t be able to increase any more, so we’ll have to add this on top of it.
Okay, but what happens after that is the question. What are the other consequences that we need to be aware of? So there you have it! One thing to bear in mind is how long you can go on like this. Because you wanted to burn energy, you wanted to burn fat, and if you can keep anything up for hours, you can go for a walk for hours, you can do a slow by jogging for hours, you could do some easy rollerblading for hours if you’re fit and capable.
But if you’re running and huffing and puffing, you won’t be able to keep it up for very long, maybe 20 to 45 minutes if you do it on a regular basis, depending on how fit you are and how fast you go; we’re not talking about a marathon here.
So if you can go for a longer period of time, you can burn a lot more fat. So, if you do this, you’ll burn more calories, but they won’t be fat calories because oxygen sets the limit.
What happens if we shift slowly from walking to running?
Another thing that happens as we go from aerobic, which is a relatively relaxed state, to anaerobic, which is a more stressful condition. As a result, we shift our perception of the body from one of tranquility to one of danger. The reserve pathway is being activated as an emergency metabolic system.
The body starts using the stored glucose
As a result, we’ll begin rapidly losing glycogen and glucose. Some of this glucose can be stored in the muscles for immediate use, but the glycogen stored in the muscles cannot be retrieved. It can’t be restored into circulation. It can’t be converted back into blood sugar for the rest of the body in the liver.
So when we run out of glucose, not just the muscles, but the entire body senses the need for additional glucose, and when the body requires more glucose, the only other reserve we have is the liver, which can only store roughly 400 calories of glycogen equivalent to a hundred grams of glycogen. That isn’t much, and it doesn’t lose the glycogen all at once, so it begins to seek for alternative sources of energy.
It increases cortisol level
Cortisol is the primary source of glucose, and it tells the liver to convert some of that glycogen while also hunting for other sources in the body, such as amino acids and proteins. Cortisol will signal the body to start sourcing more substrates, more substances to transform into glucose, everywhere it can.
We get increasingly reliant on carbohydrates as we become more reliant on them, and this is because the body’s stored carbohydrate, known as glycogen, is quite limited. When we begin to burn through them, the body instantly begins seeking for more glycogen by increasing cortisol levels.
So later on, cortisol will simply signal the liver to break down some glycogen in order to keep blood sugar stable because we’re using it faster. The muscles are utilizing the majority of it and have their own supply, but other regions of the body are also in need of glucose now and we’ve spent our stored glucose, so the liver must break down glycogen in order to boost blood sugar and supply the body.
It increases Insulin level
With increased cortisol, we’ll also need more insulin since we break down glycogen to extract glucose from the liver, which then enters the bloodstream. Insulin is required to transport it from the bloodstream to the cells that require it.
When we workout and have a high cortisol level, our blood sugar levels will rise. So we’re also going to elevate Insulin, which is a fat-storing hormone that we’ve talked about a lot. If you eat a lot of carbs after you finish a workout, you’ll be more likely to store those carbs since insulin converts carbs to fat and has a tendency to increase fat storage while also preventing fat breakdown, burning, and usage. So, everything about fat burning and weight reduction is about lowering insulin and lowering insulin resistance, and when we switch from fat burning to carb burning, we’re reverting to insulin resistance even more.
So if we stick to walking and stay in Aerobic, we’ll never produce substantial quantities of cortisol if we keep our cortisol levels low. That suggests our ability to burn fat and stay fat adapted has improved dramatically, right?
So, if we eat a low-carb diet and train our bodies to burn fat, we’re often more likely to stay fat adapted unless we go in and start using that emergency energy. If we start burning the emergency fuel immediately, we’ll boost our chances of becoming carb-dependent. BUT HOW?
It triggers food cravings and frequent hunger
So there you have it! In both animals and humans, glycogen is the storage form of glucose and carbohydrates (CHO). Carbohydrates are an extremely restricted source of energy, approximately 1-2%of total energy storage in the body. In our body, we have more fat than glycogen.
So, first and foremost, we have a lot more fat stores, which we want to burn.
We have reasonable access to that if we’re fat adapted already. The doors are open, however if we’re carb-dependent, we’ll burn through this small carb reserved before looking for more carbs. We’ll never be able to use that stored fat in our bodies for fuel in a substantial or dominating way.
So we burn through the carbs, and because of the cortisol, we stay carb dependent. Now that we’ve burned through the stores, we’ll get hungry again, right? We’ll get cravings because the body is saying, “Hey, this is an emergency, we’ve used up all the carbs, and we’ll probably need more in the future. So let’s make sure we fill up so that we’re prepared for the next time an emergency comes.”
If you’re fat adapted, however, there’s no need to panic.
You’ve got a lot of fuel to burn through. There’s no stress. There isn’t a situation to be concerned about.
As a result, it’s not simply about the number of calories you burn. It’s all about how many calories you’re going to consume. What is your proclivity for overeating and then getting cravings? So if you’re fat adapted, you’re probably not going to have any extra hunger if you’ve been fasting before and you go for a walk, you’re probably not going to come back ravished, whereas if you go for a run, if you get into this carb burning mode, you’re probably going to be ravan an hour later, and you know that insulin is the main hormone involved. Insulin is a hormone that is produced, secreted, and activated in response to blood sugar levels.
So, during aerobic exercise, we’re almost completely in fat-burning state, and if we don’t release a lot of cortisol, we can stay that fat-burning state. We’ll be in a secure situation. We’re not going to mess with that balance.
Now, if we are anaerobic, some may argue that calories are the only thing that matters, and while I hope we’ve disproved that, calories in calories out remains true. Okay, so when you’re running, you’ll burn more calories per unit of time. Is that, however, truly critical? Is it really that important? To begin with, you won’t be able to keep it up for very long. So, even though you can burn more calories each minute, the total calorie expenditure is probably not higher.
It is how you lose your muscle
But because you’re triggering cortisol, insulin, and inhibiting fat-burning, you’re not going to be successful in the long run with that because you’ll get more hungry, significantly more hungry, and what’s going to happen then is that assuming you have the willpower to resist those cravings that you’re so strong in resisting, you’re not going to be successful in the long run with that. You’ve just used up all of your glucose.Your body will have to look for it somewhere.
So if you can push through those cravings, the body will start burning muscle and converting it to glucose because you’ve basically forced the body to replenish its glycogen stores. However, if you don’t put any glucose in, the body will have to find it somewhere else, and the main source will be muscle breakdown, which is obviously not what you want.
Both methods trigger Growth Hormone!
Both aerobic and anaerobic exercise raise growth hormone levels, which is beneficial because growth hormone is a fat-burning and muscle-building hormone. The mechanisms, on the other hand, are unique.
It’s the challenge, it’s the fitness challenge that will stimulate the growth hormone in anaerobic with a high intensity with a higher intensity. However, the cortisol, insulin, cravings, and the fact that you’ll have to start breaking down muscle to compensate for the carbs you burned will more than negate the growth hormone benefit.
Aerobic exercise, on the other hand, stimulates the production of growth hormones by encouraging fasting. Okay, so let’s assume that when you fast, your body starts burning fat because there is a lack of protein, and you all go into a fat-burning state. If you’re on the Keto diet, that fat-burning state will be enhanced even more, but the principle of fasting, which increases growth hormone, is strongly accentuated by exercise.
So aerobic activity and fasting are both based on the idea that you need to generate fuel without adding any to your body. As a result, aerobic exercise boosts growth hormone levels without disrupting other hormones.
Whereas in anaerobic exercise, you produce growth hormone, but you offset it by burning carbs, causing your body to become glucose dependant. You’re about to start breaking down muscle. Cortisol and insulin levels will rise, and you’ll be more sensitive to fat storage. There are numerous mechanisms.
However, you are not stressing the body in an Aerobic condition; everything is flowing and working with the body. It operates on the body’s Harmony terms.
When you’re doing anaerobic exercise and you’re stressed, you have to deliver the carbs, and once you do, you can’t really burn the fat as fuel anymore. You simply keep burning and refilling your glycogen reserves.
Who is the winner between walking and running?
Walking is clearly the winner when it comes to maximum weight loss when compared to running. Does this, however, imply that you should never run again? or that no one should ever attempt to run away? or that the only form of exercise you should take in is walking?
That’s not how it works, of course.
Who should run?
What kind of people would be a strong candidate to run?
Someone who is physically fit, regardless of age. I mean, most people are going to be younger if they’re fit and lean, but if you’re 60 or 70 years old and healthy and lean, you could definitely still run.
You also want to be insulin sensitive, which means your body understands how to absorb fats and carbohydrates, so if you do a little jogging and use your emergency fuel, you won’t upset or stress your body too much.
If you enjoy jogging or being fit, you will first get fit and then want to preserve or enhance that fitness, as well as if you enjoy variety and enjoy trying new things. Again go for a run every now and then, but don’t imagine that the more you run, the healthier you will be or that the more fat you will burn. Okay, you should still perform the majority of your exercise aerobically.
Who should walk?
So, who should take the lead? well! If you’re already overweight, it’s likely that you’re insulin resistant, that you’re not in great shape, and that you’ve damaged your metabolism. Your body isn’t prepared for the type of stress that this imposes, and if you impose it, you’ll prevent your body from recovering from insulin resistance. You prevent your body from staying in that fat-burning state easily and persistently, and if your major concern is health, walking is preferable for most individuals. There are numerous reasons to exercise in various methods.
So keep in mind that if you’re aiming to lose weight for good, which I assume is the case for everyone, it’s all about lowering insulin resistance. And if you do so, you’ll see a significant reduction in your risk of high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease, stroke, and dementia.
What do you think about that as a bonus?
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