Sprinting Vs Jogging

Sprinting vs jogging - which is better? Everyone knows jogging is helpful in losing weight and getting in shape. What about sprinting?

Sprinting vs Jogging: A Case for Sprinting

Lots of people go jogging every day. How many people sprint? Too many people sprint when they are kids, but when they become adults they never sprint again.

1. Sprinting creates human growth hormone (HGH) in your body, as well as other beneficial chemicals. HGH is essentially the fountain of youth. It keeps us looking and feeling young. (Incidentally, high intensity exercise is what creates HGH. Sprinting and weightlifting are the two biggies in this department.)

2. Sprinting can create better anaerobic as well as better aerobic conditioning. Tim Ferriss in the "The Four-Hour Body" has a really good overview of this. He describes how tests were done on stationary bikes. One group of people biked for an hour non-stop several times a week. The other group sprinted on the bikes (sprint, rest, sprint, rest...) for just a handful of minutes in total several times a week.

After so many weeks, the first group had better aerobic conditioning. However, the group who just did the sprints had better anaerobic conditioning as well as better aerobic conditioning. In fact the gains in their aerobic capacities were similar to those who biked for an hour each time. This is one of the biggest benefits in the sprinting vs jogging debate.

3. Gray Cook in "Athletic Body in Balance" says that interval training (like sprinting) is a great way to train for long distance cardio. Gray Cook is one of the world’s most respected injury-prevention specialists. Athletes in the NFL, NBA, NHL and MBL as well as military soldiers in the Special Ops use Gray Cook’s methods.

4. Sprints take a shorter amount of time to do. If I do ten 50-meter sprints, it would take me about ten minutes to do. There. I got some exercise in. But I would rarely go for just a ten-minute jog. When I go for a jog, I like to go for at least 20 minutes or so. (But don't let me deter you from doing ten-minute jogs if that's what you like to do - exactly the opposite, good for you!)

5. Sprinting gets your heart rate up and boosts your metabolism.

6. Sprinting is very easy to fit into your day and is a convenient way to get some exercise into your day. Even if I only do one 50-meter sprint, I at least get some exercise in. Go for a short sprint down a street somewhere (or my favourite, the beach) and you might not work up much of a sweat depending on the temperature. There. Once again, you just got some exercise in. Every little bit helps.

7. There's something else about sprints that I personally really enjoy. They snap me back to reality. We spend a lot of our time physically inactive and drifting around in our heads and our thoughts. When I go for a sprint, I'm very grounded. It makes me feel alive. It makes me feel capable. It wakes me up out of my daily slumber. "Oh yes, I have a body. I can do something with it. It might even save my life."

I sometimes imagine when I'm sprinting that I'm chasing down some animal out on the Serengeti. Or that I'm being chased by some animal out on the Serengeti. Running as fast as I can, maximizing my efforts, is a very primal movement. You can lose your job, your house, the people around you, but you at least have your body and, yes, you can do something with it. It can do things for you. Like run for your life.

Also when I'm sprinting I love the feeling of not being able to move my body any faster. I try to move my arms faster, my legs faster, but I just can't. I'm maxed out. Can't do it. This only happens on the short sprints like 50 meters or so. Longer sprints like 200 meters or 400 meters you have to pace yourself more. You have to go a bit slower.

Sprinting vs Jogging: A Case for Jogging

So in the sprinting vs jogging debate should one just do sprints and never do any long distance jogging again? Some people don't like sprinting. So, yes, jogging would be better for them.

Also, there's something about going for a good long jog that is really refreshing. Being outdoors, travelling places by foot, exploring, seeing different sounds and sights - they all have a different effect on you. Sometimes I'll sprint places and cover a long distance in the end, instead of just sprinting back and forth in the same place. But there's something about going for a good jog.

Soldiers in training are still put on long distance hikes and runs. They also do interval training, like sprinting, so they get a mix. I guess this would be my final recommendation to you: do both, sprinting and jogging. But, like I mentioned earlier, if you don't like sprinting, do some jogging. Stick with that.



One final note: if you're someone who doesn't like sprinting, are you sure you don't like sprinting? Did someone earlier in your life say you weren't good at it and put you off it? When was the last time you sprinted? If it's been a while, how do you know you still don't like it? Maybe you'd enjoy it now.

What if you're a sprinter who doesn't like jogging? Ask yourself similar questions. Give jogging a try. Maybe you might like it. If you don't, you can always fall back on sprinting.

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