Sometimes, despite your best efforts, it may be difficult to achieve the body you desire. When you limit your exercise regime to one specific kind of exercise, you may reach a plateau in your weight loss journey, making it seem impossible to improve your fitness any further. This can be disappointing and discouraging, making it difficult to have patience or to figure out a better strategy for losing weight.
Limiting an exercise regime to running alone is especially problematic for women, at least when it comes to losing fat. This might seem like a strange statement. After all, how could running not burn fat?
First, it’s important to realize that although running can be an excellent form of exercise and a great weight-loss tool, runners often fall into patterns that prevent them from achieving their fitness goals. Below are some tips to help you avoid common pitfalls in your running routine.
Your First Mistake: Having No Variation in Routine
Despite what you may think, your body learns. Just like math gets easier with repetition, exercise does too. So, if you do the exact same workout every day, it’s going to get easier on your body the more often you do it. However, this ease results in less weight loss because your body does not have to work as hard to perform the exercise.
For example, if you were to run for an hour at the same pace, you would lose weight. The problem, however, is that this weight loss would only occur when you first begin this regimen. The more days you run at the same pace for the same amount of time, the less challenging the routine for your body and metabolism. To continue losing weight, you could change your pace while running by incorporating intermittent sprints or lunges, or you could run for longer periods at a faster pace each time. Having this variety in your routine is immensely important when it comes to losing weight and toning your body.
Your Second Mistake: Longer Workouts Without Going Faster
As mentioned previously, running at the same pace is only going to benefit you when you first begin running for exercise. In any kind of exercise, the intensity with which you work out is incredibly important. While running at a pace you can maintain may mean longer runs, it’s only really benefiting your endurance. Yes, it will also help you maintain your current weight, but it’s not going to help with your weight loss goals.
Pushing yourself to run faster can help with weight loss. Although running faster means running for shorter periods of time, your body will still be working hard to increase your speed and maintain your internal balance. To use the math analogy from earlier, increasing the speed of your runs is like solving more difficult math problems. While you may be able to solve single-digit problems faster, solving increasingly difficult problems will improve your understanding of math in general.
Your Third Mistake: Focusing Too Much on Calories
A common misconception about losing weight is that most calories you burn come from your exercising habits, but your body burns calories in everything you do, including sleeping. Think of calories as your body’s fuel. Even when idle, you’re still going to burn that fuel for energy and to make sure your body’s internal processes run smoothly.
Of course, going to the gym and exercising will burn more calories than just existing will, but building muscle will burn even more calories. To build muscle, you need to stop focusing on calories, and start focusing on how hard you’re pushing your body in the gym.
As mentioned above, to challenge your body, you need to introduce variety into your exercise regime. You can sprint, use the elevation feature on the treadmill, or incorporate any variety of your choosing into your running routine that will continuously challenge your body.
Your Fourth Mistake: Ignoring Other Cardio
Running isn’t the only cardio exercise in existence. It’s important to consider adding cycling or other cardio exercise into your routine because this variation can help you build muscle in different parts of your body, improving your overall health and fitness.
There are many different cardio exercises out there that will benefit you and help you achieve your weight loss goals. You just need to keep an open mind to find what works best for you.
Your Fifth Mistake: Too Much Running
It might seem counterintuitive to say that you can run too much, but it’s the truth. Running too much can cause some long-term problems.
Of course, exercise is important. It can help people stay healthy, but too much of anything isn’t always a good thing. Working out puts stress on your body, and that stress can impact everything from your hormones to your thyroid. This impact on your body can consequently halt your fat loss.
Your hormones, thyroid, and various other internal workings are what maintain weight in your body. If you alter those by pushing yourself too hard, it can cause your body to store fat. Additionally, it can also slow your metabolism, which makes losing weight harder.
Instead of trying to run as much as possible, consider adding variety into your routine that challenges your body to build more strength and endurance. One way to switch up your workout is to try a High intensity Interval Training class in Fort Lauderdale. PumpFit offers such classes that are proven to burn calories, boost energy levels, and shed belly fat. Give running a rest and join us for an intense class today!