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Lose weight by jogging: how much do I need to jog to lose weight?

Health sports and figure

How much do you have to jog to lose weight?

A woman jogs in the open air while listening to music. A woman jogs in the open air while listening to music.

Maybe frustrating in the short term, but great for long-term weight loss: jogging

Source: picture alliance / dpa theme die

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If you want to ensure your diet success, you have to do sports. Because the body tries with numerous tricks to restore the old weight. You can successfully counteract this with jogging and other sports.

WIf you want to lose weight by jogging, cycling or walking, you have to be patient. You can burn around 500 to 800 kilocalories in an hour of running – 7000 are in a single kilogram of body fat. “You can’t just train them away,” says Ingo Froboese, head of the Institute for Movement Therapy at the Cologne Sports University.

Reducing your own intake of calories when eating is therefore a much more effective measure to lose weight. Nevertheless, one should not neglect the exercise factor in a diet. It helps to stabilize the dream weight that will hopefully be reached at some point. “What matters is that sport changes the body in the long term,” explains the sports scientist from Cologne. Or, to put it figuratively: “He tuned the small car muscle engine that drives the body of an untrained person into that of a sports car.” The muscle mass in the body increases and the number of mitochondria, the power plants per muscle cell, doubles from 1000 to 1000 up to 2000.

The result: Energy consumption not only increases when moving, but also when idle. Scientists were able to show that six months of strength training is enough to increase resting metabolism by seven percent and thus the number of calories that people burn without exertion while sitting and lying down. According to the study, this applies equally to younger and older people; women need a little longer for the tuning process. Seen over the year, one kilogram of muscle leads to a person losing one kilogram of fat without doing anything else.

“In the long term, the only way I can really ensure the weight loss success of a diet is through exercise,” says Froboese. There is also another effect: After major weight loss, the body tries to regain its old weight by using the hormone leptin from the fatty tissue, among other things, to reduce the feeling of satiety, the resting metabolism and even the energy consumption of the muscles during exertion. Training seems to counteract this above a certain intensity because it lowers leptin levels and the feeling of hunger again. However, you have to train away at least 3000 calories a week for this effect – that corresponds to about five hours of jogging.

Diligent exercise has another effect, which is counterproductive at first: Sport awakens a desire for food. Other messenger substances are responsible for this. The first 1000 laboriously sweated away calories are usually related to the week – reward! – resumed. In the short term, you should therefore expect little from sport on the way to weight loss and shape change, and all the more in the long term.

This article was first published in January 2021.

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