Jogging Bad For Weight Loss and Fitness? Yes!


Drive down any scenic road on a weekend morning, and you’re likely to see more joggers than scenery. You might feel jealous at how fit and energetic they look, and perhaps even a twinge of shame as you look down at the box of donuts in the seat next to you which was your purpose for being out this beautiful morning.

But are your feelings of jealousy and shame justified? Should it be you out there in high end cool running gear jogging along to shed some pounds and get more fit?

After a careful analysis, we think you’ll agree the correct answer is NO, that should not be you. Why?

Because Jogging is BAD for weight loss and fitness.

While you definitely should be looking for ways to lose weight and become more fit, millions of people are doing more harm than good choosing jogging as their form of exercise. Can millions of people be wrong? Well, grab a donut, read on and decide for yourself.


Ok, let’s be clear who and what we are talking about with some definitions:

JOGGER – Person who runs 1 hour per workout session at a pace of 5 miles per hour (12 minutes per mile). Since many joggers keep a faster pace than that. We will also address “Runners” who keep an 8 mile per hour pace (under 8 minutes per mile). These definitions are provided by the Mayo Clinic Weight Loss Website.

WEIGHT LOSS – The losing of weight per your scale or your clothes feeling more loose. Sorry, buying new, larger clothes does not qualify under this definition (be great if it would, eh?).

FITNESS – There are many ways to define fitness. We have chosen one that hopefully matters to the most people: A person’s overall physical health measured by their ability to successfully perform a wide variety of functional tasks.


You will likely outeat the calories you burn while jogging or running

According to the Mayo Clinic, a 160 pound person who jogs for an hour will burn 584 calories. A 160 pound Revitaa pro runner ramps up the calories burned in an hour to 986. If you weigh more you burn more calories, if you weigh less you burn less. Many people don’t jog for an hour per workout, but we want joggers to have a chance at success here so we’ll pretend they all do.

In order for our jogger to lose weight as a direct result of this workout they will need to ensure they do not eat more calories than the 584-986 they just burned. This is what’s called the “caloric deficit” and it’s probably the most widely accepted and proven method to weight loss.

How realistic is that? Not very. An hour of any exercise tends to create a pretty serious appetite at some point later that day (which would be the worst time to eat it by the way), let alone the feeling of “entitlement” that comes from a workout well done. So most joggers (from here forward when I say joggers I am including “runners” unless noted) are going to head out for a nice meal to celebrate their efforts. A meal that will have much higher calories than what they would eat if they didn’t jog.

But does it really take a huge meal to make jogging or running a net loser for weight loss? The Power Bar you eat right before the run has 230 calories, that bagel with the cream cheese “schmear” you eat with your running group after the run has 400 or more calories, as does ONE decent sized slice of pepperoni pizza you’ve surely earned. If you decide to splurge on dessert because you jogged today, any decent one will surely add 500 or more calories. We won’t even mention the couple extra beers or glasses of wine…oops, guess we just did!

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