Walking and running are both suitable forms of exercise for weight loss and heart health. The benefits and risks depend on a persons goals and current level of health and fitness

While both activities allow a person to burn calories, lose weight, and lower their risk of heart disease, there is much debate over which is better

Read on to learn more about the benefits and risks

Cardiovascular exercise is also known simply as cardio. It often uses major muscle groups in the body, gets the heart pumping faster, and increases breathing rate

Walking and running are both types of cardio

Cardio exercises offer
- burning calories andfor weight loss
- lowering cholesterol
- helping prevent or manage health conditions including high blood pressure, diabetes, and heart disease
- strengthening the heart
- improving sleep patterns
- lowering stress
- increasing stamina
- improvinghealth by reducing anxiety and depression
- increasing bone density
- boosting the immune system
Walking and running provide similar health benefits, but running has a calorie-burning edge over walking

According to the American Council on Exercise, a person who is 160 pounds burns approximately 15.1 calories per minute while running. In contrast, a person of the same weight burns around 8.7 calories per minute walking

The number of calories a person burns while walking and running depends on several factors, including:
- body weight
- duration of exercise
- the intensity of the activity
Running burns more calories per minute than walking. However, walkers can still burn the same number of calories by doing so for longer

However, depending on a persons goals, walking and running can still offer the same benefits

Both walking and running are suitable for losing weight, boostinghealth, and improving overall health

One study published in the journal
*Arteriosclerosis, Thrombosis, and Vascular Biology*
However, the study did not directly address whether walking or running could benefit heart health and cardio

Another report by the
Studies have found that storing a lot ofin the midsection is
Whether choosing walking or running, exercise can help a person reduce their belly

Walking and running help burn calories in the body, but they also help reduce bellydepending on the intensity of the exercise

However, running may help reduce bellymore effectively

Scientists need to perform more research comparing the effects of walking and running on bellyreduction

For example, a 2018 review found that low-intensity exercise was more effective in reducing abdominalwhile high-intensity training had a bigger effect in decreasing overall body

People who want to lose bellyshould consider speaking with their doctor, who can help them determine the best exercise program and diet for their needs

While running and walking offer various health benefits, including maintaining a healthy weight and improving heart health, they may also come with risks

There is a higher risk of injury with running than walking. This is because running is of higher intensity and puts more stress on the bodythe joints in particular

Some of the most common injuries associated with running include:
- fractures
- soft tissue injuries
- shin splints
For runners, it is crucial to take steps to reduce the risk of running-related injuries

If a person has concerns about exercise-related injuries, they could consider walking instead, which offers similar health benefits to running, with a reduced risk of injury

Those with arthritis, heart disease, or other chronic health conditions who are considering running should consult their doctor first

Depending on a persons goals, walking and running are appropriate forms of exercise. Both can help people maintain a moderate weight and improve their heart health,health, and more

No matter which form of exercise a person chooses, they will see positive results with regular participation

For those starting a fitness journey, walking might be a more suitable choice since it involves low or moderate intensity. However, for people whose goal is to burn more calories, running may be more appropriate.