Jogging vs Running: the differences and health benefits – I have been jogging and running for a while now and have often considered the difference between the two.
Will it improve my health?
Why does it matter?
Does it matter at all?
The health benefits can be felt almost immediately if you build up slowly, take your time, and keep doing it. I always use the term interchangeably as it hasn’t been an issue.
So, whether you run or jog – your health will improve, so keep it up. This is good news!
Recently though I have been wanting to increase my speed. I think I’m moving from being a jogger to a runner.
Jogging vs Running: the differences between pace and speed
Pace and speed are the two most important factors which differentiate a run from a jog.
This can be a totally personal setting. You can decide what pace qualifies as a jog and what pace qualifies as a run.
What is the pace?
The pace is how long you would take to complete 1 km or 1 mile depending on your unit of measurement. I work mainly with kilometers.
When your sport’s watch tells you your pace is 7:30, it means you take 7 minutes and thirty seconds to complete a kilometer.
What is speed?
Speed is how many kilometers you would cover in 1 hour. Using this same example, the speed would then be 8 kph.
Speed is the globally accepted measurement for the rate of movement that you do, this can be if you run, jog or walk.
This of course will be different for men and women and for professionals and the casual runner.
For our purposes here the faster pace qualifies the activity as a run. The slower pace then falls into the jog category.
My cut-off point is to complete 5km in 30 min.
THIS IS PERSONAL AND FOR YOU IT CAN BE DIFFERENT.
The main differences are if I took longer than 30 min to complete 5km then I will call it a jog and if I can ever complete a 5km distance in less than 30 minutes, I would be very happy to call it a run.
Whenever you head out for your slow runs or a slow jog this does not necessarily mean that you are a slow runner. A relaxed pace is often what I use when I am trying to build up my distance and or endurance. The Garmin training plans always mix up the training session to give you the best chance of improving.
Jogging vs Running: mix it up
We recently wanted to try out a new route. I was unsure of the distance and the person I was out with hadn’t run in a while. We agreed on a relaxed pace for this exploratory run; in the end, it was a jog and walking pace.
This is a great way to test out a new route. Later we will increase our jogging speed and it may even turn out to be a run.
Heading out for a fast run may be scheduled in your training plan and it is usually for shorter periods of time. When I do these runs at an attempted faster speed I am very happy they are for shorter times and distances.
A training schedule often includes shorter faster runs and longer slower jogs. It all does depend on your goal.
Jogging vs Running: the differences
The short distances are mainly for the fast runs. My short distance is maybe 5km but for a professional, it could be a half marathon.
The short runs can go two ways:
- One, if you don’t have much time and you want to fit in some exercise, a short run is great. I love to run 5km every alternative day and I know that I can fit that in around my work and my studies. You can do this quickly in around 30 minutes.
- Secondly, the short run is where you can push yourself because it is short. You can up your speed here and this will help with your fitness and overall health.
The longer distances are often for building stamina and endurance.
The longer distances for me are anything starting at 10km. Others may still consider that a short distance though.
The long runs will also take a longer period of time to complete and are often done over a weekend when people usually have the day off. To be out running for a long time is not often possible on a typical work day.
The longer runs usually are easy runs because there is less stress on your body and less effort may be required.
These longer runs are great for a more casual approach and often are done at a conversational pace. It is where I catch up with my daughter. We chat the kilometers away. It is a lot of fun.
I am celebrating running and jogging for 10 years this year and my overall health has benefitted.
Jogging vs Running: health benefits
Overall health benefit
My overall health has improved so much that I hardly ever notice going up and down stairs. This is what I often have to do at work and so I am happy that stairs no longer scare me. I also used to struggle to bend my knees when sitting on the ground and then having to stand up again. This has improved too.
Running or jogging will improve your overall health if you do it safely. Start slowly, be consistent, and listen to your body.
Weight loss health benefit
I had to change the way I ate to be able to lose the excess of 20 kilograms that I was carrying around. Changing my thyroid medication helped too.
Please always check with your doctor when attempting to lose weight. This is not easy to do.
By running and jogging my health has benefitted because it has helped me to keep the weight off.
Sometimes it is ‘easy’ to lose weight, but it is not often easy to keep it off. This is true for any and everyone over 40.
Body fat is also quickly dealt with as you run or jog because you’ll be able to maintain a healthy weight.
Weight loss is a good by-product of running or jogging but it is not the main reason to run or jog.
Fitness health benefit
Being fit or super fit is not always the aim.
I like to be able to live my life and do my job.
I used to be so sluggish in the afternoons and knew that I needed to find a form of exercise that I was able to do and maintain.
Being fit and weight loss are great by-products and great benefits that you give to yourself as you either jog or run. Many of us have jobs at a desk and work behind a computer. We all could benefit from including physical activity in our everyday lives.
The specific goals for each person will be different. If you chose to either run or jog the key difference will then be if you chose an easy pace or slow pace in contrast to a fast pace. Both will increase your level of fitness.
Mental Health benefit
I love to run and sort out my thoughts. If I go through a season where I cannot run, then I really do get a bit anxious. I need to think through things. Running and jogging are best for me and greatly benefit my health, so that is what I do.
Going through injuries and illnesses sorely tests my heart and my thoughts. The best that I can then do is to go for regular walks. Whatever is good for you, do that.
It is also a great practice to run with a friend or a group of friends as this will help with your mental health too. Chatting and jogging go very well together.
Heart Health Benefit
I am extremely fortunate to not suffer from high blood pressure or high cholesterol. My cardiovascular health is really good. Jogging vs Running: the differences are all about the speed of the movement and health benefits are varied and can be beneficial to many people.
Has it always been this way? For me, my blood pressure has always been on the lower side, and for that I am thankful.
My husband however has had problems with high cholesterol in the past. He is not a jogger or a runner – he walks and he walks fast and regularly. His heart health has greatly improved because he walks.
We have another friend who suffers from extremely high blood pressure and he finds that the best exercise for him is to go for a light jog. The long distances are not for him yet. Intense exercise would put him at risk too.
If heart health as a chronic disease is something you deal with – check with your doctor about how you can start finding out which forms of aerobic exercise can help you. Proceed with caution, but slower runs may help you gain better health.
Jogging vs Running: the differences and health benefits
As a jogger or a runner remember the following:
- you determine what is the cut-off pace between a jog or a run
- my jog may be a fast walk for someone
- my run may be a light jog for someone else
- keep perspective
- keep moving