Running has so many benefits, and can aid your weight loss goals! But unfortunately many runners make some pretty big blunders that have a drastically negative effect on their results. Are you guilty of one of these 8 mistakes?
#1 Sabotaging Your Calorie Count
Running is a calorie-torching exercise unlike any other. On average, you can burn over a 100 calories a mile! A 3-miler can leave you with a 315 to 372 calorie deficit. Awesome, right? But many runners overspend their calorie deficit in an instant by grabbing a post run "reward" like a whip cream coated latte or a chocolate brownie. Instead of rewarding yourself with high-cal treats, try a delicious frozen yogurt or a creamy fruit smoothie to cut those cravings!
#2 Skimping On Fat
Fats are thought of as the enemy sometimes, but it's only the bad ones you should be weary of. Cutting out good fats found in olive oil, nuts, fish and avocados can do more damage to your health and physical performance than good. Zero fat diets mess with your hormones, leaving you hungry and void of energy. Remember to only reduce your intake of trans fats (found in packaged foods) and saturated fats (found in meats and dairy).
#3 Skipping A Pre-Run Snack
Running on an empty stomach has been thought to help your body torch more calories, but it's actually not true. If you're running for more than 30 minutes, you need to fuel yourself. Otherwise you will slow down and burn up less calories than if you had eaten something. Grab a snack that is between 100 and 200 calories before a big run. A banana with peanut is a great example of a low cal, high protein snack!
#4 Skipping A Post-Run Snack
Your muscles need to be recharged with food so they can recover properly. A lot of runners will not eat directly after their race because their body just doesn't signal it's hungry. Their appetite will return later on with full force, and they will tend to binge out. To prevent this, grab a quick snack or smoothie that has a nice mix of protein and carbs and is less than 200 calories. Chocolate milk is a highly recommended go-to as it has the perfect balance of all. For more creative post (and pre) workout snack ideas, check out the BodyRock Meal Plan
#5 Overloading On Running Gel
Many runners buy into the gels, bars and sports drinks that are supposed to keep them going. Sometimes these products can become addicting, but they do little to suppress hunger and improve performance. Water is your best bet for a shorter, 60-minute or less run. For longer runs, consuming only one or two energy gels or 16 to 32 ounces of sports drink is advised.
#6 Alcohol And Sweets Are Slowing You Down
Did you know that alcohol and sugary drinks like sweetened tea and soda don't satisfy hunger, but add tons of extra calories into your system? You might drink down 400 calories at the bar without giving it much thought, but this can seriously impede your workouts. During the day, make sure you drink lots of water and no beverages with added sugars. If you go out, stick to light beers and wines or skip the booze all together.
The pressure to immediately slim down from a new workout routine can be enough to make someone want to throw in the towel. But stick with it! Running is truly an amazing exercise and your body is thanking you at each step. Reward yourself for each added mile, block or step you take!
#8 Failing To Re-evalutaing
Larger people burn up more calories and lose weight quicker. As your fitness level increases and your body fat decreases, your body adjusts and stops shedding pounds at the same rate. Runners need to step back and adjust their routines in accordance to where their body is at. Also, take a look at your diet and do the same, as your calorie burning ratio is changing.
Are you a runner and have tips to share? We want to hear them!
Source: Women's Health