Swimming vs running: which is better for your health or fitness? Which do you love? Do you have to choose?
We travel too, and we like to travel well. This sometimes makes me have to choose between going for a swim or for a run.
Where we are.
What is available.
What is appropriate in a particular country?
So, what are the benefits?
Does one form of exercise trump the other?
Are we moving out of the realm of simplicity into complexity?
Some things to consider when you are having to make a decision.
swimming vs running – what are the benefits?
If you are consistent in both, then you will find that weight loss will be a benefit. Both running and swimming allow for some calorie burn. The number of calories that you burn in either activity will depend on intensity and duration. The amount of calories differs from person to person because of individual factors like weight, age and metabolism to name but a few. But the good news is, even though one activity will burn up fewer calories than the next, calories will be burned.
When we exercise it is good to exercise your heart – this is simply known as aerobic exercise(with oxygen). This takes place when your breathing and heart rate elevate/go up. This will strengthen your heart, and this is very good in order to get through everyday life. The physical activity that both running and swimming give will do this aerobic strengthening.
One of the benefits of swimming has over running is that it is a low-impact exercise. This can be helpful when you are recovering from an injury. The low impact is that you are not putting any of your joints because of the buoyancy of the water.
And on the other side, the impact that running has on your bone health will be good. It will keep them strong and healthy. Take yourself out side and go for a run, get some vitamin D and this weight-bearing exercise will strengthen and keep your bones healthy. Be sure to keep taking in a good dose of calcium and you’ll be able to both swim and run for many years yet.
Keeping mobile, that is important for both mental and physical reasons. I find that I have far fewer joint pain when I am active than when I am not. Keep moving friends, go for a swim or go for a run.
which is better for your health or fitness – swimming and/or running?
The heart rate can be elevated in both swimming and running and this will strengthen the heart. Start slowly and build up your cardiovascular heart. Too much too soon will only damage your heart and you will lose out on any possible health benefits.
Swimming and running will both benefit your overall health. That make the decision easier, right? Is this not the goal?
One of the main reasons why I swim, run or go for a walk – is that I need to get outside. My mental health definitely does get affected if I am house-bound for any extended period of time. I can clear my thoughts if I go for a run, this is a great way to deal with stress as well.
A great option for me to keep active during winter is to go for a swim. The better option, is of course an indoor pool. I can always get a great workout in the pool and the warmth of a shower restores my soul. I have spent a few long winters in Ulaanbaatar, Mongolia and the way that we enjoyed it the most was to join a local indoor swimming pool and it had a sauna. That is a bonus, friends – if you can do it, give yourself a treat. Winter will not be so harsh then.
Your immune system will benefit and strengthen through regular exercise. Keep fit, keep swimming, keep running or keep walking and you will strengthen your immune system. Listen to your body and start slowly. If you overtax your body, then it will weaken your immune system. That is counter productive.
So if you feel you ave to choose between a swim or going for a run, relax – they are both excellent forms of cardiovascular exercise. Get going, go, go, go. It is good to increase your lung capacity, that will help you to do more and help you to do more for longer. Win-win.
Now, for the brave – if you like to have a cold swim, then know that it will do you good. Remember, all things in good measure – not too cold and not too long. Cold water is great because it increases the white blood cell count as the body reacts to a changing condition – it is preparing to fight something.
what do they offer?
SWIMMING – now this does always depend on what stroke you are doing and how much you use either your legs or your arms. The different strokes in swimming like butterfly stoke, freestyle stroke, back stroke or breast stroke all offer something different.
Butterfly stroke you hardly ever see other than in swimming competitions.
The other three strokes you do see very regularly at any public swimming pool.
Swimming is also excellent for offering upper body work outs. That is why I love to go for a swim at least once a week to complement the running that I do. By doing running and swimming I am interested in getting a full-body workout. If you are suffering with an injury and you cannot bear your own body weight then doing a workout in a pool is great. With swimming being a low-impact workout it will put less strain on your body because of the buoyancy of the water. And it just great to swim.
My entire body can be exercised by doing both exercises. Many people go to the gym and get this done on machines and with the help of a personal trainer. I do not have that opportunity so I use Garmin to work on my swim sessions and on the running sessions. Swim workouts are well scheduled in the Garmin triathlon training plans. I love them.
RUNNING – to go for a run is still one of the best ways to look after your cardiovascular health. I love going for a run and getting outside, that is the greatest benefit for me. Cardiovascular fitness and taking care of your cardiovascular system is what you can do to keep your heart in good shape. Our hearts are the main engines of our bodies and go a long way in helping us keep the pace with modern living.
A side benefit is that running helps me maintain good bone density and that is certainly needed as when you get older it is easy to lose bone density and then become prone to bone breaks.
If you carry a bit of belly fat then going for a run can help reduce the fat in your belly. Consistency is the key of course.
The long run and the amount of time it takes is why I love to run it. It is a slower run and I do love to see where the road takes me. I always come back with a smile on my face.
to sum up
It does really depend on your fitness and/or capabilities or interest but both swimming and running have something different to offer – they work on different muscle groups. So if swimming vs running, how can we decide which is better for your health or fitness?
Swimming is a low-impact form of exercise, chose that if it’s what you like and need.
Running may be your best choice if you are looking for a high-impact sport.
Either way – you know what your body needs – do that exercise and don’t forget to have fun and enjoy it too;). I like to measure and track all of this with my Garmin watch and follow the training plans there too. Give them a try, they are excellent.