Running

RUNNING

Does Running Build Leg Muscle? The Answer May Surprise You!

If you want to lose weight in time for summer, then exercise is vital! One of the most favorite ways to burn calories would be running. But what most people are concerned about is losing inches around their legs, as many think running bulks up the thighs. But does running build leg muscle or not?

Through our research, we show you if running DOES build leg muscle, or if it's just some exercise myth!​

Does Running Build Leg Muscle Does Running Build Leg Muscle?How Does Running Build Leg Muscle?How to Run to Build Leg MuscleIn Conclusion

Does Running Build Leg Muscle?

When it comes to losing weight, you will also want to look leaner and lose the inches, rather than look "bulked up." The first instinct would be to start running for an efficient calorie burn.

But what people are afraid of is if it would build more leg muscle than making them look "thinner." Some people are also wondering if it would destroy their muscle building goals. So, does running build leg muscle in the first place? And if so, what kind?

To answer your question: YES. Running does build muscle, as you will be using your legs and exerting a lot of effort in it, especially if you continue running long-term. But wait! It is the running that makes a huge difference.

Long-distance running is what helps build leaner muscles, which is what many aim to achieve while losing weight. If you're one who wants to bulk on muscle, then sprinting is the way to go.

How Does Running Build Leg Muscle?

When sprinting, you are stimulating muscle growth from very intense running sessions at a short time. Through the explosive effort exerted, your growth hormones release faster and have your muscle fibers work harder, resulting in increased muscular volume.

Sprinting intensely in short bursts requires stronger effort and energy from your legs, which in turn, make your legs bulk up from the release of growth hormones around the area. It uses your fast-twitch muscles, used for sudden and forced movements for short periods of time.

It's similar to lifting weights, where the heavier you lift, the more effort you exert to your muscles. Even with just a few reps of lifting massive, you end up bulking up to better as compared to lifting light with more reps.

As for long-distance running, you are exerting less effort at a longer period. While your legs do harden and build muscle, it won't be as big as you may have thought it would be. It uses your slow-twitch muscles, which helps maintain less intense bouts of movement or exercise, but for a longer amount of time.

That's why you may have noticed that long-distance runners have visible muscles, but are not enormous and bulky as compared to sprinters.

Take note that your legs will grow a bit bigger during the first few runs, especially if you haven't been active for an extended period. But this is either water weight or your body adapting to the stress you put on the muscles.

But over time, especially if you are long-distance running, your legs begin to adjust. They stop growing but instead focus on muscular endurance. It won't go through hypertrophy unless you accompany running with strength training, or if you are doing uphill runs.

How to Run to Build Leg Muscle

You may already know how beneficial muscles and running is for the body, regardless of your goals. But how will you be able to run to build the leg muscle you want?

How you should run depends on what you want for your body. If you want to have a leaner physique, then long-distance running with minimal uphill workouts is recommended.

If you would want to bulk up while doing cardio, then sprinting in high intensity and short bursts will help you get to your muscle building goals. We recommend you to start weighted runs or running uphill as well.

Either way, you should pair your running, whether long-distance or sprint, with a nutritious diet and strength training. It will help you reach your goals, may you want to be lean or muscular. Just remember to choose the proper workout program according to what you want to achieve. Make sure to put on a proper pair of running shoes before starting! (Check additional info.)

In Conclusion

With running, you will be able to take advantage of the many benefits it has to offer. Not only does it burn a lot of calories, but you will also get to build the muscle you need to burn fat quicker efficiently. Yes, you will build leg muscles as you run, but don't worry about it "bulking your legs" if you're looking to lose inches. Instead, take advantage of the extra muscles that help achieve your fitness goals!

We hope that this article answers the question: "Does running build leg muscle?" If you have anything to say about running and how it builds leg muscle, then do comment! Any comment on what you have searched or experienced will be great.

This post is sponsored by JustforKix

Best Weighted Vest for Running-Things You Need to Know before Buying

Finding the best weighted vest for running may not be that easy especially for those who are just starting out. I have written this buying guide to help you find the perfect weighted vest. You may consider buying more than one vest so you can test which one will suit you best. For beginners consider buying a lighter vest

Best Weighted Vest for Running What is a Weighted Vest? The Benefits of a Weighted Vest for Running Increased Leg StrengthHelpful Tool for VariationsBetter StaminaAgilityIncreased Burn Calories Characteristics of a Good Weighted Vest Design and DistinctivenessAdjustabilityPriceTop 5 Best Weighted Vests for Running Cross 101 Camouflage Adjustable Weighted Vest (40 pounds) ZFOsports Adjustable Weighted Vest (40 pounds) Hyperwear Hyper Vest PRO Unisex (10-Pound) ZFOsports® Adjustable Weighted Vest- (60 Pound) Perfect Fitness Weight Vest Final Words

What is a Weighted Vest?

via Amazon

A weighted vest is a vest designed to carry varying amounts of weight with built-in pockets on the chest, back, and torso. You can add and remove weight depending on your preferred fitness level.

The vest can help improve your performance and overall strength. This added tool for fitness fanatics and athletes can also help increase the calories burned. The vest gives support during your workout periods whether that includes running, walking, training, jogging or different types of exercises.​

Read more on: Calisthenics Equipment For Home Exercises

The Benefits of a Weighted Vest for Running

To some people who think that buying this supplementary tool is a waste of money, here are some of the benefits of using a weighted vest for running.

Increased Leg Strength

Based on a study cited in Journal of Applied Psychology, those who wears a weighted vest during their workout had a steady level of performance. The leg strength was increased by 30% and during cycling and running it was increased by 11 to 13%. (ncbi.nlm.nih.gov)

Carrying additional weight during exercise needs more energy and strength. This can drain all your stored energy. In any kind of exercise the more weight used, the more muscles you need to adapt – this will help build the strength and muscle endurance.

Helpful Tool for Variations

A weighted vest is a helpful tool for variations. It can help you improve your workouts. This new exercise method enables you to throw your systems off whenever needed.

Better Stamina

Based on a study that involves the use of the weighted vest, wearing one that weighs around 10% of the body weight improves the performance. The participants of the study wore the vest for four weeks the whole day and while doing their workouts

After completing the study, the participants who focused on strength have improved their ability to use oxygen as they exercise. They were able to run a long distance without getting tired right away. Also, their skill in using twitch muscle fibers fast has changed a lot.

Agility

In a study published in the Journal of Strength and Conditioning Research on 2012 showed that using a weighted vest all day except during workout can help improve one’s agility. This is seen in men who wear the vest 50% of their daily activities for four weeks. Likewise, running four times a week with a weighted vest on that weighs 10% of your body weight helps you move faster during sports like basketball, tennis, and soccer. (researchgate.net)

Increased Burn Calories

An individual that weighs 125lb and runs at 6mph can burn 300 calories in 30 minutes. A person that weighs 155lb running at the same speed, time, and distance will burn 375 calories. The rationale for this is that the bigger the body, the more calories will be burned when you run.

So if the 125lb individual wants to burn more calories, he can simply put on the weighted vest and add more weight to it. Just remember never wear a vest that is more than 10% of your body weight. For instance, if you weigh 160 pounds, do not wear a vest that is more than 16 pounds.

Find more benefits on this video:

Characteristics of a Good Weighted Vest

Design and Distinctiveness

via Amazon

A weighted vest used for training and running was designed differently. You need a looser version of weighted vest if you will use it for resistance and bodyweight training. This will give you more freedom to move.

For running, you need a snug fit vest. If you use a loose vest it will move up, across and down as you sprint or jog. A loose vest used in running may cause pain and discomfort.

Adjustability

via Amazon

Choose a weighted vest that you can adjust so you can increase or decrease the weight based on your fitness level and goals. When running, make sure that the weight is evenly distributed, if not it will affect your performance negatively. Consider also the weight increments.

Some weighted vests let you increase the weight by 0.5 lbs while others allow you a 2+ pounds rise. Although 2 lbs. might not sound that much, it can still affect your performance if you are trying to run 3 miles.

Price

The price may vary depending on where you purchase it. I suggest that you check different distributors first before buying. Keep in mind that an expensive vest may not be the best for your needs.

Top 5 Best Weighted Vests for Running

Here are five weighted vests that you can consider buying:

Cross 101 Camouflage Adjustable Weighted Vest (40 pounds)

via Amazon

The Cross101 Weighted Vest is a good product to use if you want to add resistance to your workout. The vest looks really good that girls might find you very attractive on it. This vest is not just for running, you can also use it during your cross and strength training.

This product has a short design that measures 15 inches in length from your collarbone down and 13 inches in width. The size of the vest is enough so you can move freely as you run and do your other functional training. Your weight is distributed evenly across the back and front of the vest. Thus it is very comfortable.

CHECK THE REVIEWS ON AMAZON

PROS

13-inch in widthIncludes warranty from the manufacturerMaximum weight is 40 poundsOffered at a reasonable priceOne piece vest with belt attached for easy setupOne size fit mostThe package includes additional weights – 10 x 4 pounds Iron Ore WeightsYou can adjust the weights into four-pound increments

CONS

It does not strap as tight as others which resulted to rub spots due to vest movement.Lack padding in the shouldersShipping cost is not included in the vest priceThe iron-ore included in the package is actually sand in black plastic bags and not metal

ZFOsports Adjustable Weighted Vest (40 pounds)

via Amazon

The ZFOsports is designed to fit and stay tight to your body even under the most rigorous workouts. This is designed for both men and women and is ideal for first-time users who want to have a reliable vest at a reasonable price. It fits your body well and allows you to move and breathe easily as you do your workout.

If you want to adjust the weight, you can do so by removing or adding weighted bags until you achieve your desired weight. The product is fastened tight to the torso. A custom fit weighted vest eliminates weight shifting as you do your workouts.

The vest adds resistance to training routine without affecting biomechanics. The product is made of high-quality materials that last through your longest runs.

CHECK THE REVIEWS ON AMAZON

PROS

All weights are removable with 2.5-pound incrementsIt fits the user comfortablyIt is durable because it is made of high-quality material that can survive even the most rigorous workouts. (why, you support it by something here)The maximum weight limit is 40 poundsThe package includes 40 pounds weight

CONS

The instructions are not clearOne size fits mostIf you want to return the product, it will cost you a lot

Hyperwear Hyper Vest PRO Unisex (10-Pound)

via Amazon

The manufacturer has created a very sleek and versatile weighted vest made of high-quality material. The Hyperwear vest is based on a patented design using patented fabric. The stretch fabric wicks sweat well, which is perfect for runners.

Hyperwear’s unisex design has side lacing for highly adjustable fit, thus it fits everybody. The product has a thin profile for full range of motion. You will be able to burn a good amount of calories. Hyperwear is a simple, powerful gear.

CHECK THE REVIEWS ON AMAZON

PROS

Tested and approved by athletesProfessional-grade weighted vestIncludes a 10 pounds of high-density steel weightsThe capacity of this vest is 64 pounds perfect for starter since it will meet your needs as you growYou can move freely because it has thin designOdor resistantThe sides are open for ventilation making the fabric cool and comfortable to wearStretch fabric wicks sweatDistributes weight perfectlyVery flexible it can fit all body shapes and sizes

CONS

ExpensiveSome users reported that the weights fall through the fabric after a year of using itBuying additional weights can cost you a lot.It only includes 10 pounds of weight.

ZFOsports® Adjustable Weighted Vest- (60 Pound)

via Amazon

If you are in search for a heavier weighted vest, ZFOsports is a good vest to consider. It includes 60 pounds adjustable weights. Inside the vest, you will find 40 pounds of weights. You can remove the weights if you want to. This weighted vest is also adjustable in 2.5-pound increments.

ZFOsports features a unisex design and is available in one standard size designed that will fit all. It will fit the user perfectly, which prevent the vest from moving around as you do your workouts. You can use it in running and during your workouts. This is a great way to improve your resistance on your workout.

The vest can help increase your speed and strength. It can accelerate weight loss and improve respiration. You can achieve your goals fast and you can even double the results with ZFOsports weighted vest.

CHECK THE REVIEWS ON AMAZON

PROS

Fits the user perfectlyDurableIncludes a 40-pound weightThe maximum weight limit is 40 poundsAll the weights included in the vest are removableYou can adjust the weight in 2.5-pound increments

CONS

One size fits allInstructions in assembling the vest is not clear.You can watch YouTube video to as you assemble itIf you are not happy with the product, you can return it but it will cost you a lot

Perfect Fitness Weight Vest

via Amazon

The Perfect Fitness vest can hold up to 20 lbs in 1-pound increments. It has a slender design but it will not affect your mobility. The vest includes a breathable shell for comfort as you do your workouts any time of the year. It is available in highly reflective material that will keep you safe on the roads.

This weighted vest has a contoured pocket so you can place your MP3 player or phone on it. The dual band enclosure gives the vest a personalized fit. It also has a padded shoulder for better comfort. If you want a heavier Perfect Fitness, you can choose the one with 40-pound weight.

CHECK THE REVIEWS ON AMAZON

PROS

The vest has pocket to hold your MP3 player or phoneIt comes with a reflective materialThe slim design will give you better mobility

CONS

Some have smaller frames and lack straps for stabilitySome find it uncomfortable to use if worn longerIt moves a bit as you do your workout

Final Words

It does not matter which among the 5 best-weighted vests for running you choose. They are all rated well because they are made of good quality materials. I am sure that you will be satisfied with what it can add to your training.

I own two of the above-mentioned products, the ZFOsports (60lbs), and Cros101. These two weighted vests help me improved my overall strength and I love them. The only difference between the two is the weight included and the price. But when it comes to durability and versatility, they are the same.

Definitely, these weighted vests will take your workouts and your overall strength to the next level. You will feel the benefits of using these vests and everybody will see it. If you find this post helpful, you can leave your comments below.

How Long Does It Take To Walk A Mile – You Have The Best Answers Now!

Are you contemplating about walking a mile, but are not sure how fast you should go? It's hard to estimate the standard times in completing a walk of that distance; depending on the amount of training, your mindset and speed during the adventure, walk times can significantly vary.

That is why we are here to assist you: in this piece, we shall answer common queries on "how long does it take to walk a mile?", as well as offer guidance on how to go about preparations for the walk. In addition to improving, you will also get motivated to realize your personal best for future walks. Let’s get started!

How Long Does it Take To Walk a Mile How Many Minutes Should I Take To Walk a Mile? How Hard Should I Train?Proper EquipmentTypes of workoutsFrequencyTake Breaks, Cross trainHow fast should I go during the walk?Conclusion (Take Away Message)

How Many Minutes Should I Take To Walk a Mile?

There is no specific amount of time in which you should walk a mile. From professional athletes to novice walkers, one mile walk times can differ among individuals. Besides, it also depends on the difficulty of the course (i.e. flat surface, hills, uneven ground, etc.).

With that said; some of the quickest athletes can walk a mile under seven minutes while others might take their sweet time and walk in thirteen, sometimes even twenty minutes.

BoostBodyFit

However, this disparity does not imply that one’s a better walker than the other; numerous aspects such as the training intensity and setting objectives influence athletes when it comes to preparing for and competing in the event. If your objective is to better your speed, though, you will need to train harder!

How Hard Should I Train?

Depending on where your walking ability is at the moment, as well as the target time you want to meet for the upcoming walk, your training intensity will differ significantly.

Whether you are a seasoned athlete or a beginner, here are some training tips that you should take into account when preparing for a walk, small or big:

Proper Equipment

Before commencing your training, you will need to have a pair of solid walking shoes for practice. Be sure to confirm that they are the right size and support your heels well to prevent induced injuries from occurring while training.

Besides having a solid pair of walking shoes, it is equally important that you have a sports watch since you can use it to time yourself, calculate your heart rate, and even record splits.

Related article : The best running shoes for flat feet

Types of Workouts

While it’s perfect for endurance, walking several miles daily and at the same pace will not help you better your walking time, if that is your objective. Instead, you will need to spice up your workouts with a mixture of pacing and slow distance.

With slow distance workouts, walk at a comfortable pace with which you can easily carry on a conversation. Pace yourself appropriately, know when to slow down and speed up at particular distance marks.

Frequency

Ask yourself how many times you’d like to train per week, and adhere to that. If you are a novice who wants to improve for the one-mile walk, then more practice is the way to go.

Then again, this does not mean that professional, faster walkers do not need to train just as much as their beginner counterparts; aiming to prepare as much as you can without getting burnt out is hugely rewarding when it comes to achieving a good finish time for the walk.

Take Breaks, Cross train

While performing intense workouts on a daily basis will no doubt result in changes in your mind and body, it is crucial to know when to take a break from the workouts to allow the body to recuperate and prevent any exercise-induced injuries from happening before the walk. Allocate one or two days of rest between every exercise session.

In the meantime, keep your body active by doing cross training workouts such as doing yoga or lifting weights. These activities will keep your muscles on while also not exerting too much stress on walking.

How Fast Should I Go During The Walk?

Similar to the interval training, you have a fast pace during the walk, but also strive to maintain a solid pace throughout as well. Divide your walk into three sections; the first and last should be your quicker times while your second is slower, so as to conserve energy for the finish line.

While pacing yourself might not work as intended because of the walking conditions and your competitors’ conditions, doing your best to make it work will go a long way in helping you get one mile walk time close to what you desire.

Conclusion (Take Away Message)

Overall, it greatly depends on your walking ability and other walking aspects that’ll determine how long and fast your one mile walk times will be. However, here is a reiteration of elements that will affect your walking time:

How much you have trained beforehand The quality of your racing flats and walking shoesThe consistency of your pace.

Have any queries? Feel free to comment.

Want to Elevate Your Running Game? Here’s How You Can Give Your Endurance a Boost

Do you want to eventually be able to run a marathon? Maybe you just want bragging rights when it comes to how much distance you can cover in a single running session. Well, regardless of the reason, you are here because you want to be able to take your stamina to the next level and want to be able to run for longer.

The first thing you should know about this process that you aren’t going to see an improvement overnight – it is definitely going to take some time. However, if you stick with it, you will certainly be able to achieve the results you want. So, with this in mind, here is what you need to do:

Run More Often

This feels like a rather obvious point but that doesn’t mean it is any less important. If you are hoping to improve your endurance and aren’t willing to wait months to do so, you need to be lacing up at least five times a week. The good news, though, is that you don’t have to run crazy distances every day. Instead, you can complete shorter runs around two to three times a week and save the longer ones for the other days.

That being said, there is no denying that running five times a week isn’t feasible for most people with busy lives. If this describes your situation, then you can reduce the number of times you run to around three times a week. Of course, this does mean that you have to focus on running longer routes on these days as there is no room for easy runs.

Focus on Your Breathing

As you can imagine, one of the things that can really throw you off while running is your breathing. This is especially true when you are pushing yourself to run longer distances. So, one of the things that you need to focus on is your breathing techniques.

First and foremost, you should get into the habit of breathing through both your nose and your mouth – particularly when you have been on the move for a while. Since your body’s oxygen demands will increase the farther you run, breathing through your nose and mouth can make sure that these requirements are met.

The next thing to keep in mind is your breath depth. When you have been running for a while and need to catch your breath, you are more like to take quick, shallow breaths. Unfortunately, this isn’t going to provide your lungs or muscles with the oxygen that they need. To be able to do this, you will need to start practicing deep breathing.

This is fairly simple. See, whenever you inhale, you should be able to see your belly protrude a little. You will then be able to tell that the air has worked its way deep into your lungs. Your stomach will depress once more when you exhale. In the beginning, it can be helpful to place your hand on your belly, just to make sure that you are breathing deeply enough.

Increase Your Distance Gradually

As already mentioned, it is going to take a bit of time before you are able to run a greater distance than what you are currently used to. Now, it can be tempting to run as far as you can, each time you train. In fact, it can seem like an excellent way to boost your endurance and help you reach your running goal. Unfortunately, this method will only serve to increase the risk of you hurting yourself by overtraining.

What you do need to do, instead, is to rely on the 10-percent rule. This states that you should only ever increase your running distance by 10 percent compared to what you were able to do the week before. For example, let’s imagine you have been running two miles in the last week. If you want to kick this up the following week, you can try running 2.2 miles. However, you shouldn’t attempt anything greater than this.

Try Interval Training

Now, when it comes to building up your endurance, most runners are concerned with longevity over speed. Nonetheless, incorporating sprints into your regular runs can actually provide you with that stamina boost that you need. After all, sprints are responsible for an increase in lung capacity and muscle strength which is what you need to help build up your endurance.

To start with, you can simply run at full speed for around 15 to 30 seconds and then slow to a jog or even a walk. It is important to watch for overtraining, though, when relying on this method. Try to limit interval training to around two to three times a week for the best results.

Run Uphill

If you are trying to whip your body into shape and increase your stamina, running farther isn’t always the solution. This is why you should consider uphill running every now and then. As you are aware, it takes a lot more effort to run on an incline. This means that your heart has to work much harder and with time, you will be able to see that your aerobic capacity will increase.

Uphill running provides other parts of your body with a serious workout as well – this includes your calves, hamstrings, quads, and core. The combined benefits of these uphill sprints mean that you get to enjoy greater stamina when running on level ground. To start with, you should try to run uphill sprints for around 10 to 30 seconds and then cool down for around 60 to 90 seconds. With time, you may be able to increase these sprints up to 60 seconds at a time.

Don’t Forget to Cross Train

It can be rather unusual to see a runner hitting the gym or getting involved in too many other activities. This is fair enough, considering that most runners are interested in improving their cardiovascular performance. You should keep in mind, though, that running isn’t the only form of activity to help improve this aspect of your fitness. Cycling and swimming are both excellent for this. To top it off, these activities are actually a lot gentler on your joints, helping to cut down on the risk of injuries.

On a similar note, to enhance your stamina, you are also going to need to build up muscle. After all, the stronger your muscles are, the more capable they will be of supporting you on long distances. So, you should start focusing on building up muscles in your legs, core, and glutes. Fortunately, a few simple bodyweight exercises will be enough to get you started. Try squats, lunges, and planks to improve these areas.

Fuel Your Workouts Properly

Food can be a rather tricky thing to work out for runners. On the one hand, you know you need fuel to keep going. On the other, nobody wants to have to deal with the queasiness of eating a snack shortly before going for a long run. Also, many runners assume that they are burning a lot more calories than they actually are – it is estimated that you burn a little over 100 calories for every mile that you run.

About an hour before you head out for your run, try eating a snack that is no more than 150 to 200 calories. It is important that you have some unprocessed carbs that are easily digested. This can include a banana, whole wheat toast, whole grain crackers, or carrot sticks. It can be good to eat some protein along with this, but you should stick with a few cashews, healthy nut butters, hummus, or a cheese stick.

Get Plenty of Rest

The more you run and train, the more you will exert your body. So, it should come as no surprise that you get lots of sleep as well. It is when you are sleeping that your body is able to repair itself and heal so that you can continue with your training. The key to a properly functioning body, though, is to get the right amount of sleep. This is why you should aim to get at least eight hours a day.

It is just as important to know when to rest your body as well. Although you may be itching to train like a demon and to get your endurance level up, you have to learn to take a break every now and then as well. So, after a bout of particularly strenuous training, it can be beneficial to take a day or two off. In the long run, it will actually help to improve your performance and preserve your health.

Find Ways to Keep Going

Even the most determined runner can feel like giving up on occasion. Not to mention, it could feel like you can’t convince yourself to run anymore, even though you can. It is during these moments that it actually helps to distract yourself. Music is often an excellent mechanism for keeping you on track with your training. Choose tunes that get your heart rate up and prompt you to run for just a little longer.

If you are someone who craves company, then you may find that having a running buddy can make it easier to push yourself a little further. These individuals will act both as motivation and competition and make your runs a bit more fun. Just remember to choose someone with an equal or greater skill level than you so that you don’t feel the need to let your performance lag.

While this may seem like quite a list, keep in mind that every one of these points will help to build up your endurance. So, consider including them all in your running routine.

Author Bio

Joi Bellis is a writer with a focus on health and fitness. She uses her Master’s degree in Psychology to research how people can prepare themselves both physically and mentally to become healthier and stronger individuals. Joi loves sharing this knowledge with her readers and hopes to enrich as many lives as she can.


See more: