When it comes to burning calories, I've heard that it doesn't mater if you walk or run. As long as you go the same distance (amount of miles,) then you'll burn the same amount of calories. Is this true?
It's often believed that whether you're running or walking, you burn about 100 calories per mile, but that's not the case. You see, when you're walking, you keep your legs mostly straight, and your center of gravity sits on top of your legs. When you're running, you're actually hopping from one foot to the other. With each hop, your center of gravity rises up and then lowers down when you land, since you bend your knee to absorb the shock. When you're raising and lowering your weight, you're actually fighting gravity, which takes more effort than walking.
Here are some numbers to wrap your brain around. Syracuse University did a study that involved 12 men and 12 women. Their caloric burn was measured when both walking (19:00 minute miles) and running (9:30 minute miles), for a distance of 1,600 meters (about a mile). The men burned an average of 105 calories while running, and just 52 while walking; the women burned 91 calories while running and 43 walking. That's a huge difference.
So if burning calories is your goal, you may want to kick it up a notch and run instead and give this walking and running workout a try.