Does Trail Running Burn Fat? | Hikers University

Too much fat in your body can cause various diseases, and it is best to get rid of it as early as you can. So, does trail running burn fat? 

If you are looking for an activity that can burn body fat quickly without requiring you to go havoc on dieting, trail running might be a great option for you. 

You can burn 500 calories by trail running at a moderate pace for just an hour. However, this is not it. Trail running helps to boost your metabolism as well, which means that even when you are at rest, your body burns more calories. 

Not only that, but trail running can also allow you to get visible abs. Below, I have discussed how much you need to trail run for the best results and how much time this low-impact activity takes to start showing significant signs of transformation. 

All the facts and figures provided in this piece are backed by scientific research and studies. 

Table of contents


Does Trail Running Burn Fat?

Trail running is a great way to burn fat and calories. It is a low-impact activity that gets your heart rate up and helps you shed unwanted pounds. But how exactly does trail running help you lose weight? 

The first thing to consider is the calorie burn. Trail running burns more calories than walking because it is a more strenuous activity. Walking at a moderate pace for 30 minutes will burn around 150 calories, whereas trail running at the same pace can burn up to 250 calories. That means that in just one hour of trail running, you could potentially burn 500 calories! 

But burning calories is not the only way that trail running helps you lose weight. It also helps to boost your metabolism. Metabolism is the process by which your body turns food into energy. The more active you are, the higher your metabolism will be. That means that even when you are at rest, your body is burning more calories. 

So, if you are looking for a great way to lose weight, consider adding trail running to your workout routine. It is an excellent way to burn fat and calories, and it can also help to boost your metabolism. 

The Characteristics That Make Trail Running Superior For Fat Burning

Trail running is a great way to burn fat. In fact, it may be even better than running on a treadmill or on the pavement. Here's why: 

  1. Trails are softer, so they're easier on your joints. This means you can run for longer distances without pain, which will help you burn more calories and fat.
  2. The uneven terrain of trails forces your muscles to work harder, which also burns more calories and fat.
  3. Running in nature has been shown to reduce stress levels, which can help prevent weight gain in the first place.
  4. Trails typically have more hills than other routes, which means you'll get an extra workout for your legs and butt — two areas that are often troublesome for people trying to lose weight. 

So if you're looking for a great way to burn fat, consider giving trail running a try. You may be surprised at how much fun it is — and how effective it can be for weight loss. 

Trail Running Helps Getting Visible ABS

We all know that running is a great way to get in shape and improve our health. But did you know that trail running can actually help you get visible abs

Here's how: 

When you run on trails, your body has to work harder to stabilize itself. This means that your core muscles have to engage more than they would if you were just running on a flat surface. And the stronger your core muscles are, the more likely it is that you'll have visible abs. 

In addition, trail running forces you to use different muscle groups than you would when running on a flat surface. This helps to create a more balanced physique and can also help to prevent injuries. 

Is There a Link between Trail Running and Muscle Loss?

Whether you're a seasoned runner or just starting out, you may have heard that trail running can be tough on your muscles. After all, pounding the pavement is one thing, but taking on rugged terrain can really put your body to the test. So, is there a link between trail running and muscle loss?

Here's what the research says: A 2018 study found that runners who completed an ultramarathon (any race longer than a marathon) had significant decreases in muscle mass in the days following the event. However, these same runners showed no signs of muscle loss after completing a traditional marathon. 

So, what does this tell us? Well, it seems that while trail running may be more demanding on your muscles than running on a flat surface, it's not necessarily any more likely to cause muscle loss. In fact, the researchers found that runners who completed the ultramarathon actually had greater levels of muscle protein synthesis (the process by which new muscle is built) than those who ran the marathon. 

So, if you're looking to maintain your muscles while running, trails may not be the best bet. However, if you're up for a challenge and don't mind a little extra effort, trail running could be a great way to keep your fitness goals on track. Just be sure to listen to your body and take breaks when you need them. And as always, consult with a doctor before starting any new exercise regimen. 

Where Will I Lose Fat From First When Trail Running?

When you first start running, you will likely lose fat from all over your body. However, as you become more fit, you will begin to lose fat preferentially from certain areas. For example, many people find that they lose fat from their legs and butt first, followed by their arms and stomach. This is because these areas tend to have the most stored body fat. 

So, if you're wondering where you'll lose fat from first when trail running, the answer is that it depends on your individual physiology and body composition. However, you can expect to see results in all areas of your body with consistent training. 

Is Trail Running Better Than Road Running For Fat Burning?

Trail running and road running are two popular forms of exercise that can help you burn fat. But which one is better for burning fat? 

Here's a look at the pros and cons of each type of running: 

Trail Running Pros

  • Trail running can be a more challenging workout than road running, which can help you burn more calories and fat.
  • Trail running can also be less monotonous than road running, making it more enjoyable and easier to stick with long-term.
  • The varied terrain of trail running can also help to reduce the impact on your joints, which is beneficial if you're prone to injuries.


Trail Running Cons

  • Trail running can be more difficult than road running, which may not be ideal if you're just starting out or are looking for a low-impact workout.
  • The uneven terrain of trail running can also make it more difficult to maintain good form, which can lead to injuries.
  • Trail running can also be more time-consuming than road running, as you may need to allow for extra time to navigate the trails.


Road Running Pros

  • Road running is a relatively easy workout that anyone can do, regardless of their fitness level.
  • Road running is a great way to get your heart rate up and can help you burn calories and fat.
  • Road running is a workout that is low-impact. This means that it is easier on your joint bones than certain different activities, including weight-lifting and running on the treadmill, etc.


Road Running Cons

  • Road running can be repetitive and boring, especially if you run the same route every day.
  • The pavement can also be hard on your joints, which can lead to injuries if you're not careful.


How Many Calories Does Trail Running Burn?

This can be difficult to estimate as it depends on a number of factors, including your weight, age, gender, and the intensity of your run. However, a recent study published in the Journal of Sports Medicine estimated that trail running could burn anywhere from 7 to 12 calories per minute. 

This means that a person who weighs 180 pounds (82 kg) could burn up to 1,296 calories in an hour-long trail run. And someone who weighs 120 pounds (55 kg) could burn up to 864 calories in the same amount of time. 

Of course, the number of calories you actually burn will depend on how fast you're running, the incline of the trail, and other factors. But this research provides a good estimate of just how many calories you can expect to burn when you hit the trails. 

How Much Do You Need To Trail Run To Burn Fat

In order to burn fat while trail running, you need to maintain a heart rate that is within your target fat-burning zone. This can be different for everyone, but generally speaking, your target fat-burning heart rate should be about 60-70% of your maximum heart rate. To calculate that, you need to subtract the number of years you have lived from 220. For example, if you are 40 years old, your maximum heart rate would be 220-40=180. Therefore, your target fat-burning zone would be between 109-126 beats per minute. 

If you want to burn even more fat, you can try interval training. Interval training is when you alternate between periods of high intensity and low intensity. For example, you could sprint for 30 seconds and then jog for 1 minute. Repeat this cycle for 20-30 minutes. Interval training is a great way to burn more fat in a shorter period of time. 

Overall, the best way to burn fat while trail running is to keep your heart rate within your target fat-burning zone. You can also try interval training to give yourself a little boost. Remember to warm up before you start and cool down after you finish. 

If you are looking to lose weight through trail running, it is important to keep a few things in mind. First, focus on quality over quantity. It is better to run slower for a longer period of time than it is to go all-out for a shorter period. Second, make sure to warm up properly before your run and cool down afterward. Third, be sure to drink plenty of water before, during, and after your run to stay hydrated. And fourth, listen to your body and make sure not to overdo it. 

How Long Does It Take To Start Losing Weight From Trail Running

It is difficult to estimate how long it will take to start seeing weight loss results from trail running. This is because there are many variables that can affect weight loss, such as diet, intensity of exercise, and genetics. However, if you stick to a regular trail running routine and combine it with a healthy diet, you should start seeing some results within a few weeks. 

One of the best things about trail running is that it is a very effective workout for burning calories and promoting weight loss. In fact, studies have shown that trail running can burn up to 30% more calories than traditional forms of cardio, like jogging or cycling. 

Another great benefit of trail running is that it helps to build lean muscle mass. This is important because muscle tissue burns more calories than fat tissue, even when you are at rest. So, by increasing your muscle mass through trail running, you will be able to burn more calories and lose weight even when you are not working out.


Peter Brooks

Peter Brooks

I’m a hiker, backpacker, and general outdoor enthusiast. I started hiking out of college while working for the National Forest Service, and have been hiking ever since. I’ve been solo hiking and leading hiking groups for two decades and have completed hundreds of small hikes and some majorones such as the Appalachian Train and the Pacific Crest Trail, and hiked on four continents. I’d love to share some of my insight with you.

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