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Running is a popular pastime that many people take quite seriously; as Olympic runner Steve Prefontaine once said, "Most people run a race to see who is fastest. I run a race to see who has the most guts." Another reason to run -- in a race or otherwise -- is to burn calories. From running faster to running more frequently, there are many ways to burn more calories running. Consult a doctor prior to starting any running or weight loss program.
Variables for Calories Burned While Running
The amount of calories you burn while running varies greatly depending upon the pace of your run as well as your weight and the duration of your run. Longer runs, quicker speeds and a heavier body weight will increase the rate of calorie burn. When you run for a longer period of time, propel yourself at a quicker pace, or weigh a lot, your body has to work harder to maintain your running speed. When your body works harder, it expends more calories. If you expend more calories than you consume, you will lose weight.
Amount of Calories Burned on a Typical Run
Running is an efficient calorie-burning exercise. If you weigh 180 pounds and run at a pace of 12 minutes per mile for an hour, you'll burn 686 calories. If you run for an hour at a pace of 8 minutes per mile, you'll burn 1,072 calories. In terms of calorie-burning efficiency, running compares favorably to activities such as light to moderate-intensity weightlifting, which burns 257 calories per hour.
Running Twice Daily
Running twice daily can be an effective way to burn more calories than running once, as you may find it easier to perform two shorter runs instead of one long run. Getting time to rest after your first run may help you run faster and longer in your second run than you might run during the second half of a single, long run. In addition to burning more calories, research from the June 2007 issue of the "Journal of Applied Physiology" indicates that running twice daily promotes more fat-burning than running once, even if the total duration of exercise is the same.
Dangers of Multiple Runs in a Day
While running twice a day can be beneficial, it may also present dangers. Injuries such as Achilles tendonitis, shin splints, runner's knee and iliotibial band friction syndrome can all result from running too hard or too much. You can reduce the risk of these overuse injuries through stretches and strengthening exercises for your quadriceps, hamstrings, iliotibial band and calves. Running on soft surfaces and changing your running shoes every 500 miles can also be helpful.