Fitness
Moderators: melkor


When do I start to see results from running?


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I see a lot of people post that they gain weight after they run - turning fat into muscle and all that jazz.  I'm experiencing this.  I lose more weight faster when I don't work out.  This isn't something I want to do as I believe I will be better for building a healthier body if I continue to run.

So - my question to the runners - when will I see my hardwork pay off?  Will the scales start to move after a month?....  3 months?

Is there a point where you have trained your body and it starts to shed the weight as a result of the cardio or will it just be a slower loss because of the running?

Am I making any sense?

17 Replies (last)

To cut fat you need to have a calorie deficit. Cardio only helps create the deficit by burning calories. Cutting fat is mostly in your diet. If you metabolize 2300 calories a day and eat 3000 and burn 400 running you are still in a surplus of calories by 300 and will gain weight.

If you are in a deficit and the above is not true, then your body is probably retaining water which makes the scale go up. I generally have an increase of 2-4 lbs in my first 3-4 weeks of getting back to the gym after a long time off. Also, you might be gaining some muscle in your legs which will eventually stop after a few weeks as you muscles get used to the same type of exercise and will stop growing.

So don't worry, if you are in a deficit and you keep the cardio up, you will see results after 4 weeks or so.

Thanks!

I've been at it for 2 weeks.  I'm an impatient person so  waiting 4 weeks for results kills me ;)

Your body will also retain water to help repair muscle.  Don't be surprised if your wieght fluctuates 3-4 pounds between days.  it took almost 2-3 months before I saw any appreciable weight loss.  I plateued in the 200-205 range (from 235), then I plateaued again at 190-195, and now at 180-185...  Running is a great way to lose weight and stay balanced, but you have to dedicate yourself to your nutrition to make it happen.

The same thing happened to me.  Last summer I had to take 3 months off of running due to a stress fracture and ended up gaining almost 10lbs (I kept eating as if I was still running...oops).  I got the all clear to start running again in October, but did not see the weight come off until now. 

Also be sure that your calorie intake isn't too low for a runner.  I'm 5'2", 126, run 20-30 miles/week and eat around 1600-1800 on sedentary days and anywhere from 1800-2500 on running days.  Eating too little stops your metabolism in its tracks, plus it makes you feel like crap during and after runs, so be sure to fuel up!

On average I run about 25 miles per week.  I love it!  I have found that the scales moved downward more dramatically once I added strentgh training twice a week to my routine.  I didn't go overboard because I don't want huge muscles, just a tone body.  I mostly work on my upper body because my legs are already pretty strong and defined from the regular running.  Make sure you eat enough and give yourself a rest day, at least one or two a week, to give your body a chance to heal.  Hope that helps!

 

#6  
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I'm not sure if you actually meant it like this, but fat can't turn to muscle, the two things are completely independent and one can not turn into the other.

I trained for a marathon last spring and saw little to no difference on the scale in the 3 months that I was training, but noticed a big difference in how my body looked and how firm my 'jiggly bits' had become.  I wasn't counting calories at this point, so I could have just been eating enough to support a bit of muscle mass gain.  So, if you are maintaining a deficit, I think in 3 months you should be able to see a noticeable difference in how your body looks and you weight on the scale. 

You may lose weight faster when you don't work out, but this could be muscle and not fat.  Muscle has this funny 'use it or lose it' mentality, so if you are maintaining a deficit and not exercising, your body will likely eat more muscle that fat, leading to the dreaded "skinny-fat".  Try running, compare your measurements and weight over a month or so, not day to day or week to week.  Strength training will help you become faster and also helps raise your metabolism even when you are not doing strength training (cardio doesn't really have to same metabolism boosting effects), both together are the way to go.  You won't gain muscle bulk because girls really don't bulk without serious effort to do so.  Get 2 days of rest per week and you're good to go.

Good luck!

Running is a shock to your system. Since your body is not used to burning calaries at that level it will try and store more energy (in the form of fat) to compensate. It usually takes your body a couple of months to get used to it and know that it can function at that level of calorie burn.

Diet is extremely important. Don't try and reduce calories and start running at the same time. Stay at the same calorie intake for the first month or so. Once your body gets used to running and you want to lose more weight you can reduce calories. How and when you eat is also very important. Drink something with carbs before you run. I like Accelerade because it has a little protien. Doing that will let your body know you are not starving it. Cross trianing is also very important if you want to lose weight.

Most important don't concentrate too much on weight. Focus on how you feel and look. Done right running will change the composition of your body. Increase muscle mass and lower fat. That doesn't always equate to a lower weight.

#8  
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it took about 3 weeks for me and then the pounds dropped fast.

You definately need to watch your intake and will see a difference in about a month. I gained weight after my first two marathons, then finally figured out that when the training subsides, so must the calories. Keep it up.

Original Post by wesmckean:

Your body will also retain water to help repair muscle.  Don't be surprised if your wieght fluctuates 3-4 pounds between days.  it took almost 2-3 months before I saw any appreciable weight loss.  I plateued in the 200-205 range (from 235), then I plateaued again at 190-195, and now at 180-185...  Running is a great way to lose weight and stay balanced, but you have to dedicate yourself to your nutrition to make it happen.

Yep, same for me. It took 2 months or so before I started to see results, then I'd periodically plateau for awhile. Stick with it, eat your veggies and you will definitely see results!

#11  
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Take a power yoga class. Preferably Vinyasa style. This will help you build strength and also shed that extra pounds in water weight. It a great way to feel the benefits of your hard work. I usually loose 3-4 pds after just one class. All be it water weight, it is a great way to get results that you need to stay motivated to keep running. It also helps with the lactic acid build up you might get from building new muscles.

 

It should only take a week or two to start feeling the results of running.  Seeing results will depend on your diet.

Original Post by canuckabroad:
I'm an impatient person so  waiting 4 weeks for results kills me ;)

You're not going to get results if you don't build the patience to put in the time it takes to lose.

Like others have said, losing weight is about a calorie deficit.  As long as you are eating less than you are burning, you will lose.  A new exercise may have temporary effects like retaining water weight, but having a new routine is good for you in the long run. 

Personally, running makes me lose weight the fastest, because that's because it is VERY challenging for me.  I haven't ran seriously in months and I'm already hurting when i jog just a few minutes. 

However, even though it drops the weight the fastest, lifting weights, burned way more fat than running ever did for me.  Running helped me with the numbers, but I liked the way I looked weight lifting more than anything.

Are we running from the Zombies now?

Original Post by melkor:

Are we running from the Zombies now?

I guess we are.

Original Post by trhawley:

Original Post by melkor:

Are we running from the Zombies now?

I guess we are.

Mother F#*@K#$

I hate when this happens.

 

However, I'm totally stoked about running from zombies!

Original Post by melkor:

Are we running from the Zombies now?

Or are we yoga-ing from zombies?

I have to say, I don't think any number of sun salutations will get the zombies to stop eating your leg.

17 Replies
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