Despite all of the media attention given to what to eat, when to eat, and how much to eat, exercise, not diet, has the strongest effect on weight loss. Indeed, research has shown that exercising more than 250 minutes per week is needed for significant weight loss and for maintenance of weight after weight loss. According to the National Walkers’ and Runners’ Health Studies, people who run over 40 miles per week have 18% smaller bra cups, 10% lower body mass index, 8% lower waist circumferences, 7% lower hip circumferences, and 4% lower chest circumferences compared to those who run less than 10 miles per week. Underscoring the importance of running for the rest of your life, research has also shown that you gain more weight by stopping running than the weight you lose by starting running.
If you want to lose weight and keep it off for the rest of your life, running has to become a part of who you are rather than something you do. Find a way to internalize your running, and you’ll never have to worry about fitting it in. If you’re pressed for time, run for just 15 minutes. Just run. The time people spend reading books on how to lose weight could be spent running to lose the weight.