You Can't Outrun a Bad Diet
Running by itself doesn't make people lose weight; creating a caloric deficit does, Dr. Harrison explained. "If you use running as part of the equation to do that, you can very roughly figure that each mile you run burns about 100 calories." Mathematically speaking, in order to create a caloric deficit to equate to one pound of fat loss per week (one pound equals 3,500 calories), you'd have to run about 25 to 40 miles per week — that's a lot of miles! So the best thing to do is create a daily 500-calorie deficit with a combination of exercise and diet.
Be aware that running can increase hunger, so if you eat in a calorie surplus, you will gain weight. "The bottom line in achieving weight loss is that you need to burn more calories than you take in," explained ACE-certified personal trainer Sabrina Correia of My House Fitness.
Although exercise plays a huge role in weight loss, you cannot out-exercise a diet that is full of processed, nutrition-void foods, reminded registered dietitian Emily Tills, MS, CDN. In order to lose weight sustainably, Tills recommends eating a balanced diet, which can support weight loss and maintenance. Aim to get all three macros — protein, carbs, and healthy fats — at each meal. Focus on whole, unprocessed foods, including fresh fruits and vegetables, lean protein, and whole grans. If you need some inspo, check out this two-week clean-eating plan. To find an exact eating plan that works for you, including how many calories to eat in a day, we recommend speaking with a registered dietitian.