Yeah i have women clients that walk and lose 20lbs i have guys who walk and jog and lose 15lbs. Everyone is different. I used to think it was about speed now i think it's about duration 40 min's burns more then 30 mins. I found when i used the elliptical for an hour i saw more results. Duration is everything. Human beings should be able to use an elliptical for an hour straight.
This column was supposed to called “Running with an Olympian.” It was supposed to be about me getting whipped into shape by the famed Jeff Galloway, a former Olympic runner, top finisher in the Boston Marathon, beloved columnist at Runner’s World magazine, and near-celebrity at a health journalism conference I recently attended.
But then, in a non-running-related accident, Galloway got injured. He could no longer run with us—a group of journalists who were ready and willing to trade our pride and business attire for shorts and 6:30 AM networking, all for the prospect of sharing a little time on the road with a star. (We’ll do anything for a good sound bite.)
Alas, we hit the road Galloway-less and met up with him afterward for coffee, fruit, and trail mix. That’s when I decided I’d better change my angle: Galloway didn’t deliver the tough love beating I expected from a record-breaking athlete. Instead, he told us amateur runners to take it easy.
Here’s what else I had wrong about the sport I apparently knew little about.
Myth 1: Faster is Better
“There’s no downside to slowing down,” Galloway told us. Funny thing to hear from someone who broke the U.S. 10-mile record in the 1970s by clocking sub-five minute miles—but he means it. Galloway has built his empire—which includes nationwide training groups, best-selling running books, hundreds of speaking engagements, and more—on his RUN-WALK-RUN marathon training method, which he says helps over 98% of participants make it through marathon training injury-free.
The method, which endorses alternating between walking and running during long training runs (you can look up suggested ratios based on your pace here), helps you avoid injury and allows your muscles to recover more quickly. In the long run—no pun intended—Galloway says you’ll cover more ground and ultimately shave many minutes off your race time.
Myth 2: You Only Need to Train Your Body
When our ancestors ran, they were running from something. It probably only took a few hundred yards to either get away or get eaten. That’s why Galloway says our bodies weren’t made to run much further. But, he adds, “we can train them to.”
Specifically, it’s your brain you have to train. Otherwise, it might panic when you keep running after it thinks you should stop. Galloway recommends using mantras like “I feel good, I feel strong” or “today’s my day”—really anything that engages the cognitive, or thinking, part of your brain and distracts the subconscious part.
Myth 3: There’s No Such Thing as Too Much Water
On more than one occasion, my morning run has been set to a soundtrack that I call “stomach slosh”—a loud and irrepressible reminder of the prior nights’ pints. I’ve even considered carrying a water bottle to trick passersby into thinking the sound is coming from it, not from my over-served belly. But Galloway says the slosh probably isn’t lingering beer—it’s water I’ve chugged pre-run, and it can be dangerous.
While dehydration is a much more common ailment for runners, its opposite, hyponatremia, can be just as deadly. Drinking too much water too fast throws off the balance of water and sodium in your body, causing your cells to plump up with water. This is especially a problem for the cells in your brain, where your skull constricts their growth.
Fortunately, both extremes are relatively avoidable. Galloway suggests drinking about 4-6 ounces every 20 minutes during a long race or training run. Stomach slosh means you’ve already had too much. If your hands or feet start to swell, you get sick to your stomach, cramp up severely, or feel disorientated, then stop running, stop drinking, seek help, and seek salt. Oh, and note to self: Beer is not the best form of carbo-loading.
Myth 4: Star Runners Were Born That Way
If Galloway had a walk-out song, I imagine it would be “Born This Way.” Maybe that’s just because I like to pretend my life is a Lady Gaga musical, but the point is, he looks like a runner.
But looks can be deceiving: Galloway was far from athletic as a kid. In fact, he was so lazy that he joined the cross-country team because his “slacker” friends told him it was the easiest of the required sports. On long runs, he’d waddle off to the woods to hide out until practice was over. Even when the older boys invited him to join them, he planned to fake an injury. “But then, they started telling jokes. Then, they started to gossip about our teachers,” he said. “And I didn’t want to miss out.”
Like many runners, Galloway first started to enjoy the sport because of its camaraderie. His story is an important reminder that whatever motivates you to get moving is a good reason to do it—and the thought that “I’m not a runner” is not a good excuse not to. “Once people experience this, they don’t want to let it go,” he says.
Hey! I knew that! I guess not everything I thought I knew about running was wrong after all.