30 Day Running Plan To Lose Weight

No Comments

running to lose weight

30 Day Running Plan To Lose Weight

Scientific research has proven that running is a very effective way to lose excess body weight.

In combination with a calorie-monitored and balanced diet, running can help you effectively speed up the rate at which your body burns fat.

Nonetheless, it’s easier said than done.

If you want to lose weight effectively by running, you need to understand the methods that work and why they do.

Running and Weight-loss

Intake and usage of calories is the basic science governing any weight loss regime.

Basically, for your body to lose weight, it must burn more calories than you take in every day. On average, a man utilizes about 2,500 calories daily.

Therefore, if the average man consumes 2,500 calories each day, there will no change in his body weight.

If he consumes more than the required amount, say 3,000 calories per day, he will have gained 500 extra calories.

Instead of wasting these excess calories, the body converts and stores them as fat.

It is important that you know the amount of calories you should consume to facilitate weight-loss.

In the same vein, an average man who takes in about 2,000 calories in a day has consumed 500 calories below the amount his body requires.

To meet up with his caloric needs, his body will have to turn to his fat stores and burn 500 calories. This is the science behind weight-loss.

Following this mechanic, there are two ways to go about weight loss.

You can either decrease your calorie consumption while maintaining the same amount of activity (that is, dieting), or you can increase your daily activity while consuming the same amount of calories (that is, exercising).

The most effective weight-loss plan, however, combines both of these.

How Many Calories Do We Burn When We Run?

Three major factors influence the amount of calories your body will burn – your body weight, the distance covered during your run, and your running speed.

Running at a slower pace for a long time can burn just as many calories as running fast for a shorter period.

The more you weigh, the more effort required by your body to move, and the more calories your body will burn.

Thus, the amount of calories that will burn in an overweight individual will be more than the amount a slim person who covers the same speed and distance will burn.

Take a look at these examples to guide you:

  • A person who weighs 160 pounds running for 30 minutes at 5 mph will burn 291 calories.
  • A person who weighs 200 pounds running for 30 minutes at 5 mph will burn 364 calories.
  • A person who weighs 240 pounds running for 30 minutes at 5 mph will burn 436 calories.

From the examples above, for every 40 pounds of an individual’s weight, he/she will lose an extra 74 pounds when they run the same distance.

A general method of telling the amount of calories a person will burn in 30 minutes is multiplying his/her total body weight in pounds by 1.8.

running to lose weight plan

How Much Running Will Expedite Weight loss?

Since you know the caloric amount that your body will burn while running, the next thing to know is the distance you should run to speed up your weight-loss significantly.

One pound of body fat holds around 3,500 calories. Therefore, losing a pound of fat requires burning 3,500 calories above your caloric intake.

You will lose two pounds of fat if by burning 7,000 calories, and so forth.

Your weight-loss goal is safe and practical if you decide to lose between one and two pounds of fat every week.

Your objective should be having a calorie deficit between 500 and 1,000 every day.

Losing a pound each week may seem slow, but you will appreciate it in the long-run. It would mean that you lose about 52 pounds each year!

How To Calculate Calorie Expenditure.

  • Recall that to know the amount of calories your body can burn in 30 minutes
  • you need to multiply your body weight in lbs by 1.8.
  • Thus, to know how long you should run each week, multiply your body weight in pounds by 1.8
  • Then divide your answer by 30.

weight loss for running

How To Calculate Your Energy Expenditure By Body Weight.

This will give you the number of calories you will burn per minute.

For instance:

  • a person weighing 250 pounds will burn 450 pounds every 30 minutes.
  • If we divide this (450) by 30, then that person would burn 15 calories for every minute they run.
  • After calculating the amount of calories your body will burn every minute, divide 3,500 by the value you got.
  • This will give you how long you should run weekly to lose a pound of fat.
  • From the example above, a person weighing 250 pounds burns 15 calories every minute.
  • We get 233 minutes or 3.8 hours per week when we divide 3,500 by 15.

With this knowledge of your weekly run-time, you can split it over a certain number of days per week.

A solid weight-loss plan splits running sessions over 4 or 5 days each week, with rest or recovery periods in between.

From our example:

  • person weighing 250 pounds could run for 46 minutes,
  • 5 days each week or 58 minutes,
  • 4 days each week and they’ll lose a pound of fat whichever way.

I have compiled an easy four-week running plan that will help expedite your weight-loss goal and save you the stress of making all of these calculations.

This exercise plan can help start you off if you’re trying this for the first time.

It’s mandatory that you warm up for 5-10 minutes before you begin each workout, and then cool down with 5-10 minutes of stretching when you are done.

For optimal results, do each workout at least three times each week.

30 day running plan to lose weight

Four-Week Running Plan To Lose Weight

First week

  • Slow to medium pace run: 20 seconds.
  • Walk for 40 seconds.
  • Repeat 5 times and then rest for 120 seconds.
  • Repeat the 5-minute interval and 2-minute rest 4 times.
  • Total workout time: 28 minutes.

Second week

  • Medium pace run: 15 seconds.
  • Walk for 45 seconds.
  • Repeat 5 times and then rest for 60 seconds.
  • Repeat the 5-minute interval and 1-minute rest 4 times.
  • Total workout time: 24 minutes.

Third week

  • Medium pace run: 30 seconds.
  • Walk for 30 seconds.
  • Repeat 5 times and then rest for 60 seconds.
  • Repeat the 5-minute interval and 1-minute rest 4 times.
  • Total workout time: 24 minutes.

Fourth week

  • Top speed sprint: 10 seconds.
  • Walk for 50 seconds.
  • Repeat 5 times and then rest for 90 seconds.
  • Repeat the 5-minute intervals and 90-second rest 4 times.
  • Total workout time: 26 minutes.

Note: Though the duration of the workout for the fourth week is less, it is way more intense than the first three weeks. Beginners may find it challenging to attain top speed after just four weeks.

Beginners may find it challenging to attain top speed after just four weeks.

Nevertheless, make sure to put in your best because these short sprints will progressively boost your running speed, weight and stamina.

How to run to lose weight and stay motivated

How To Lose Weight Running And Stay Motivated

It can be difficult to stay motivated to run if you feel that you are not losing weight, or perhaps you get in in the evening and just can’t be bothered.

Motivation is fickle. You can look in the mirror and see that you need to something to lose weight, and then after a week of hard work you feel that it is too much work to carry on.

Does this sound like you? If so carry on reading because I am going to share one of the most powerful ways to stay motivated to lose weight running.

Are you ready?

The key thing is to remember your WHY!

  • Why are you going out for runs?
  • Why do you want to lose weight?
  • Why does it mean so much to lose weight?
  • How will it impact on your life?
  • What problems are the weight causing you
  • How will you feel once you have lost the weight?

If you can keep this in your mind every day, it makes harder to quit!
Once you remember your why, another important thing to help keep you on track is to set goals. SMART goals.

Why is setting S.M.A.R.T goals important?

Do not underestimate the power of setting goals properly. Setting goals allow you to set realistic expectations and can help to prevent disappointment.

Nothing is worst then running for two weeks without looking at the scales for fear of failure, only to look and then see you have lost no weight.

That can suck the life out of anyones motivation. However, if you have accounted for the fact that this may happen then you avoid that feeling of failure.

For this reason SMART goals are essential for weight loss!

I have been using SMART goals for my personal training clients for many years now. If you use this system it will help you to clarify your goals and give you a clear route to success.

running to lose weight

How to establish a good goal

To help you to understand how to get crystal clear and specific with your goal we are going to look at a common weight loss goal that perhaps you have used in the past and use the SMART goal principle.

Just take 10 minutes of your time to help give you a clearer purpose for your weight loss goal.

Use this example as a template for your current goal to tailor it to your specific goal.

Normal goal: “I would like to run to lose some weight around my stomach”

What we will do is apply the S.M.A.R.T principles. Each letter has its own mean. What you will notice is that the goal will only become complete and fully corrected S.M.A.R.T when every last component is completed.


The first stage is to refine your running goal to a significant landmark that you would love to accomplish.

  • Several specific reasons for wanting to lose weight could be:
  • Your doctor told you to lose weight as your blood pressure is too high
  • You may want to lose weight to have more energy to play with your kids
  • You may want to reduce your weight as you have a heart condition.

If your weight is not linked to a heart condition then you may just want to lose the weight that you have put on over the last few years, over Christmas or on your last few holidays.

Adjusted goal

“I will run to lose 10 kilos to help reduce my belly fat”

running to lose weight burn belly fat


You must be able to quantify the progress of any goal otherwise you will not how much improvement you have made.
How will you measure your goal?

  • Inches lost around your waist
  • % decrease in body fat
  • Reduction in your BMI
  • Weight lost in kilograms
  • A specific dress size (trouser size for men)

Be specific about which one you will you use. In this example we will use percentage decrease in body fat.

Adjusted resolution:

I will run to lose 10 kilos, to help reduce my belly fat. I shall measure my body fat using skinfold calipers.”
lose weight running


Earlier we talked about setting the right expectation. If you set yourself a target of losing 10 kilograms within a month that would be silly.

The goal must be attainable. Look at your history of weight loss in the past. If you have been successful then you may be able to be more ambitious with the target you set.

To ensure that your weight loss target is achievable, you should evaluate your previous history losing weight.

Let’s say that you have never achieved losing more than 5 kilos, then a weight loss goal of 10 kilos may not be realistic.

If you have never lost 5 kilos then perhaps 10 kilograms is too much for you to manage. Set a smaller goal that you can achieve as this will help to build your confidence.

Fix your goal so that it is reasonable.

Adjusted resolution:

” I will run to lose 5 kilos, to help reduce my belly fat. I shall measure my body fat using callipers. Once I reach 5 kilos, I will consider setting a new goal for continued weight loss.”
lose weight running fast 


As I said before about your “WHY.” It needs to be something powerful. It needs to have real relevance and meaning for you in order for you to attain it.

Once you have done some soul searching and really got down to the real underlying meaning you will have a strong SMART goal. Some things that may be meaningful to you:

  • I want to feel confident in my appearance
  • I want to feel beautiful
  • I was always fat when I was younger and was never able to wear a bikini
  • I want to get rid of the fat that over hangs on my jeans.

The more personal you can get with your meaning the more relevant your goal becomes you. The more relevant your goal is to you, the greater your chance of staying motivated to achieve it.

Adjusted resolution:

” I will run to lose 5 kilos, to help reduce my belly fat. I shall measure my body fat using calipers. Once I reach 5 kilos, I will consider setting a new goal for continued weight loss. Losing this weight will help me feel more confident in my appearance and I will be able to wear the clothes I always wanted to wear.”
running for weight loss beginners


When are you going to achieve this goal. If you don’t set a time limit to the goal then you are not going to take it seriousley. When you are new to weight loss it is hard to know what is a realistic time frame.

For this reason you may want to be cautious. As a guide you may want to prepare yourself for the fact that you may not lose any weight in the first 4 weeks to avoid disapointment.

If you do lose some weight then it is a bonus and will give you confidence. After four weeks a realistic expectation is 1/2 a kilo – 1 kilo a week.

However, for people with a lot of weight to lose the number can be more greater!

Adjusted goal:

” I want to lose 5 kilos in the next 3 months, to help reduce my belly fat. I shall measure my waist using a tape measure. Once I reach 5 kilos, I will consider setting a new goal for continued weight loss. Losing this weight will help me feel more confident in my clothes and will help give me more energy to play with my kids.

How to run to lose weight

How to use running to lose weight fast and burn belly fat easily

Running is an amazing way to burn body fat to lose weight. It is particularly good for burning that stubborn belly fat that is hard to move.

Running will also help to strengthen and tone your abdominal muscles as well, once you have developed core strength.

However, if you are running regularly but you are finding that you are not burning fat, there is a reason for that.

If you want to run to lose weight and burn belly fat you need to other things. Running alone will not be enough!

Why running alone wont help you lose weight

This is something that has been misunderstood by a lot of new runners.

That isn’t to say that running doesn’t burn a lot of calories, because it does. However, if you are eating and drinking excessive amounts of calories you wont outrun a bad diet!

You need to improve your diet as well as do your long runs, and short high intensity runs. Remember that abs are made in the kitchen and not in the gym…..

Or in this case the road!

I have given you some running tips to get started.

How to run to lose weight

About your abs

Your abs form part of your core and they have a very important part to play for stabilising your lower back.

When you run your legs will move your pelvis, which in turn will cause your lower back to move.

Your abdominal muscles will prevent excessive movement of the pelvis to help protect your lower back and to keep your upper body in an upright position.

In the long run, having a strong core will help prevent injuries to your lower back

5 steps that you can take to help burn belly fat Running to lose weight

1) Mix up your speed

Instead of running at a slow steady pace try doing interval training. The faster pace will accelerate your heart rate and cause you to burn more calories.

This doesn’t mean that you never do any long steady state runs, but you have to run smart as well as hard. This is one way to do that.

You can either have a non-active recovery, which is where you stop completely. Or alternatively you can run at a slower pace to allow your body time to recover.

Instead of running at the same exact pace for your whole run, try intervals to rev up metabolism and reduce belly fat. Alternate between pushing your body to the max and some recovery time. Check out these great interval workouts for you to try.

2) Try shorter runs

By doing a short high intensity run you can improve your running pace. Its another way to vary your running speed.

It is not just your muscles that adjust to running. Your nervous system adjusts and becomes efficient at running one speed.

By running faster for a shorter period, you will use more energy from your anaerobic energy system and burn more calories.

You will also reprogram your nervous system to run at higher intensities, which in the long run will lead to you being able to burn more calories.

running weight loss tips

3) Try running for longer

The long runs are really important, particularly if you are a beginner. Not only do these long runs build your endurance base.

They also allow you to burn a lot of calories over a long period of time. The name of the game for weight loss is to burn calories.

Doing abdominal training will help, but they won’t be enough on their own.

4) What type of foods are you eating?

As I said earlier you have to eat right.  One of the best things you can do is reduce the amount of processed foods in your diet.

If you are not sure what processed foods are they are any type of food that has been altered.

Foods to avoid

  • White rice. To make white rice the grain has to be altered. As a result white rice is not as pure as brown rice and is listed as a high glycaemic food (a food that will spike your insulin). Try to eat brown rice instead of white.
  • Ready meals contain lots of salt, sugar and preservatives. The extra salt can lead to your blood pressure increasing and can aid weight gain.
  • Fizzy drinks are awful because of the amount of extra sugar in them. They give you empty calories. Any sugar that is not used for energy by the body is converted to fat and stored in your body. Stick to water if you want to hydrate yourself.
  • Isotonic drinks also contain a lot of sugar. If you are trying to lose weight its best to hydrate on just water. It is true that your body loses salt as you exercise and that isotonic drinks will help replace those salts. However, the calories that you have burned on your run will probably be put straight back into your body.
  • Anything sweet like doughnuts, biscuits, cakes, chocolate, muffins should be avoided for the reasons mentioned above. Everyone knows that these foods are bad for you so I won’t go into further detail.
  • Alcohol needs to be reduced as it is high in calories and offers know nutritional benefits.

5) Get more sleep

Sleeping is so underrated but so important.

Studies have shown that people who get 8 hours of sleep a day and reduce there stress levels are more likely to lose weight than.

This study was linked to sleep and stress. If you are someone who has stress in your life sleeping more will help.

Sleep affects decision making

Also, when you have a lack of sleep your decision making can be affected. As a result of lack of sleep your brains reward centres can be heightened.

This can lead to you wanting to indulge on something rich in calories in order to satisfy the signals received from your brains reward centres.

It acts in a similar way to being drunk in the sense that your inhibitions have been lowered.

Sleep more, eat less and increase your muscle

A study from the American journal of clinical nutrition showed that people who have less sleep show an increase in late night snacking.

Lastly, another study showed that more muscle mass is lost on sleep deprived people compared to the participants who had sufficient sleep.


Previous Post
Strength Training For Runners
Next Post
Core Exercises Vs Glutes Exercises For Runners.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Fill out this field
Fill out this field
Please enter a valid email address.
You need to agree with the terms to proceed

Gerald has a bachelor’s degree in Exercise, Nutrition & Health. He is an ASA qualified swimming teacher, and a qualified personal trainer. Gerald has developed his own exclusion diet, which he uses to help his clients lose weight.