We are seeing a steady rise in obesity rates due to the unwise lifestyle choices of the 21st century. Unhealthy eating, sedentary life, and not exercising enough have led to a significant chunk of the population becoming overweight. Thankfully, many of them have realized the dangers associated with those unwanted kilos and have made up their minds to lose some weight.
Once that decision has been taken, another question pops up. How should you go about it? Everyone knows that the two best ways you can lose weight without any equipment are running and yoga. But how do you pick between the two?
Let’s settle the debate of yoga vs running and find out which is better.
How does Weight loss happen?
Weight loss boils down to using up more calories than you consume. Calories are your body’s fuel, it burns them to release the energy needed to carry out all the different functions of the body. But, when you take in more calories than your body needs, they get converted to fats that deposit all over your body. In such cases, you will have to create a calorie deficit by reducing the quantity of food you eat. It’s only then that the body will use up the fats to power itself and you will start losing weight.
How does Running help?
Running burns more calories every minute than any other cardio activity, anything between 10-17 calories/minute depending on your weight.
Running speeds up your metabolism, that regulates your energy consumption. The faster your metabolic rate, the more quickly you lose weight. Moreover, running reduces your appetite so that you won’t be tempted to snack in between your meals. Some forms of running, such as high intensity running or uphill running continue to burn calories at a fast pace long after you have completed your run.
How does Yoga help?
Yoga burns fewer calories per minute than running. It is a slow but steady path to weight loss. What works in yoga’s favor is that its effect lasts much longer than a morning run. Like, running, yoga too improves your metabolic rate, which means your body will continue to burn calories faster throughout the day. But in the case of running, this effect does not last the whole day.
If you want yoga to burn calories faster (though it can never match running when it comes to calories burnt/minute), you will have to opt for the more active versions of yoga such as Bikram, Ashtanga, Iyengar and Power yoga. With yoga, you also get the added benefit of adding muscle mass to your body, which is not the case with running.
Yoga vs running for weight loss – the verdict
Running will help you reach your weight goal faster. But, yoga can help you lose weight too, albeit at a slower pace. So if you want to lose fat as soon as possible, running is more suitable. If time is not of the essence and you want to add muscle mass as well, yoga is a better option.