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Running vs Weightlifting - Which Is Better to Keep Fit?

08 Jun. 2022

When you are attempting to stay healthy and fit, there are many different options to choose from on how to do that. However, not all of them are great choices.

Two of the most popular types of staying fit are running and weightlifting. Most people choose one of these exercise types when maintaining a healthy lifestyle. It is still important to know which one of these types is the better use of your time. Each exercise type offers different benefits, but you can combine the two for some pretty amazing results.

So, to help you decide on whether you should do more running or weightlifting to reach your goals, in this article, we will discuss both options and take a look at what they are and what aspects of your health they impact.

The Differences

There are some pretty noticeable differences between lifting weights and running. Aside from how each exercise is executed, each type of exercise is also going to have a different impact on the body.

Weightlifting is anaerobic, which means it breaks down glucose to produce energy. Anaerobic activities do not rely on oxygen. Also, all of the energy is used within a short amount of time.

Running is an aerobic activity. This means it uses oxygen to increase energy levels. Running and other cardio activities increase your breathing and your heart rate while performing them.


Running is a form of cardio, which is a broad term for many different aerobic exercises - like riding a normal road bike or even riding a stationary bike from the comfort of your own home while getting some work done.

Cardio is great for improving the health of your heart and overall endurance. While running, your heart rate goes up, and your breathing increases so that your body can receive more oxygen through your blood.

Activities like running will boost your aerobic capacity and your body’s oxygen transport efficiency. Cardio allows you to burn more calories during your workout session than weightlifting. How much you weigh will determine how many calories you can burn.

For example, a person that weighs around 70 kg can burn between 80 and 140 calories when running an average 10-minute mile. This provides people with a way to lose weight faster.


Weightlifting and other strength-training activities are great if your main priority is to gain muscle. Aside from that, weightlifting also allows you to burn more calories all day long, even after your workout is finished.

This is because the more muscle you have, the more fuel (energy or calories) your body will need, which will get rid of fat a lot quicker. Your bone density can also be increased through weightlifting because it affects the strength of your bones. This can help prevent health complications like osteoporosis, breaks, and fractures.

One of the reasons for this is that stronger muscles are good for your joints and provide more support. In the long term, this will reduce the risk of knee and shoulder injuries and even arthritis.

Why Not Choose Both?

While both running and weightlifting each have their own fantastic benefits and can help you burn more calories, choosing both is the best option for staying fit in the long term. With a mix of cardio and weightlifting in your workout, you can lose fat while gaining muscle. This is the best of both worlds. It will take more time during each workout to successfully accomplish both, but the time is well-spent.

There are different benefits depending on which one you do before the other during your workout. If you want to burn more calories with less effort and also build strength, you should put weightlifting ahead of your cardio. To work on your endurance, you can schedule some cardio before you lift weights.

You should allow for five to eight 30-minute cardio sessions each week. Two or three of those days should also include weightlifting that focuses on your full body. Three to five days should contain weightlifting that focuses on separate muscle groups, and each weightlifting session should last for around 45 minutes to an hour.


Overall, a combination of both running and weightlifting is the best option when trying to stay fit in the long term. Each has its own benefits individually, and combining those benefits offers the best option for keeping healthy.

Each burns calories, but cardio will allow you to burn more during your workout session, while weightlifting will allow you to keep burning calories even after you are done working out. Cardio burns fat faster. Weightlifting builds lean muscle mass.

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