Calories Consumed vs Calories Burned - Want to Lose Weight

by Cesar
(San Diego, CA)

Hello, a while back I decided to start running to be in better shape, but recently I read something that worries me. I've heard that the way to lose weight from running is when you burn more calories than you consume. So hypothetically if I eat as many calories in a day as I burn while running(I run three miles, every other day), is my weight just going to plateau forever?

Answer by Dominique:

Hi Cesar,

Thank you for your question about running for weight loss.

Yes, you are absolutely right. Your weight loss is a function of the amount of calories you take in vs the calories you burn.

The most effective way to lose weight is combining your diet and exercise. A quote I use more often on the site is from Steve Moneghetti, previous Olympian marathoner. His golden diet rules are:

1) Eat absolutely everything you want.

2) Run at least 100k per week.... :)

For us, mere mortals, a more balanced approach between diet and exercise is the way to go if we want to lose weight.

You are doing well already with your running. Three miles every other day is a good base. I would advise to try and build that up gently over time. After all, the more you run, the more calories you burn.

Diet-wise make changes that you know you can sustain. Don't start starving yourself and eating only two slices of cucumber. Don't start skipping breakfast or other meals. But eat less and eat healthy foods.

Also check my running for weight loss page.

Hope this helps.
Kind regards,

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