Biking Vs Running for Weight Loss – Which Is More Efficient?

Biking vs Running

Weight loss occurs when more calories are expended than consumed. How do you burn these calories? What are the things to do to burn calories? Exercise! Exercising is a great way to lose some weight and research has shown that biking vs running are the two most effective exercises to achieve weight loss.

Even beyond that, maintaining a healthy weight is an essential part of living and exercising is one key thing that will help you through this.

So if you are considering biking vs running, the one to choose between the two depends on your preference.

These two exercises help you stay fit and moderate. Then, what else do you want to know?

Which one burns more calories, right?

It's good to know that you have been making an effort to lose some weight and this article is here to help you understand the effectiveness of the two exercises. The following are what we will look into:

Consideration of Biking Vs Running

When you think of biking vs running, the first picture you paint in your mind is the exercise that will make you sweat a lot, make you pant for breath, strain your muscles, reduce your fat, and lose some weight. It is true, but there's much more to know about bike riding vs running.

Let's analyze the calories burned by the two exercises:

Bike riding

Someone of 80 kg weight will burn about 665 calories in an hour exercise.


Someone of the same weight will burn 620 calories in 16 minutes.

In the comparison above, it is clear that running burns more calories than bike riding. However, that is not the only factor to consider.

If you are a beginner, who desires to shed some weight, starting with running as an exercise may be so uncomfortable because you may develop painful and sore shin, this may lead you to stop the practice altogether.

Also, there may be too much pressure on your joints since your body is just adjusting to the new exercise life. However, if running is your most preferred choice, you can consider light walking or jogging at first. This will ease your body into the exercise.

On the other hand, you should consider bike riding as a beginner. This is because biking doesn't put much pressure on your joints. In short, after pedaling for a long time, you can stop pedaling and let the bicycle be on a free motion.

For people who have a back injury or leg issues, biking is the best to consider. Running involves more muscles than cycling, and also, it takes more movement of the joints.

While running the pain, you feel around your waist and on your back will become more intense. However, biking is a bit more comfortable for waist and legs.

Summary of Biking Vs Running

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    Biking is a good beginner exercise.
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    Bike riding makes it easy for people with back, hip or leg issues to lose weight.
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    Running helps lose more calories.


How much weight you will lose is not directly dependent on the type of exercise you do, whether biking or running, or even another form of exercise. Another determinant of how much calories you will burn is how much time you spend doing the exercise and also your consistency, that is, how often you do it.

Are you one person that will jog today for 1 hour and then till the following week before you jog for another 2 hours? This approach isn't practical for weight loss. Your consistency matters a lot.

If you are looking 100% benefits of cycling vs running then 10 minutes or 20 minutes daily is better than doing any of the two for 2 hours once in a week.

It follows that when you increase the intensity of bike riding vs running, some calories you burn increase.

Now that we have pointed out the importance of frequency let's take a look at the benefits the two exercises have to offer, so we can decide which is best for us when thinking biking vs running for weight loss.

Benefits of Cycling Vs Running

Benefits of Cycling

  • Cycling is a good beginner exercise; it eases the body into the exercise life.
  • Bike riding helps burn calories at a slower pace without exerting much pressure on the body muscles and joints.
  • It helps boost the cardiovascular system, though moderately.
  • Bike riding is suitable for people with back and joint issues, as they can't be left out of the exercise life.
  • For someone who is overweight, biking is an excellent way to start their weight loss program because it puts less stress on their body.
  • It is easy for cycling to become part of someone's daily routine.
  • Biking is more fun and engaging.
  • Cycling can be done indoors.
  • It's easy to control your pace when riding without feeling as though you're not doing anything.

Benefits of Running

  • Running is weight-bearing, and it burns more calories than biking.
  • Running is good for building strengths in the bone.
  • Very good for cardiovascular system because of the rate of pulses or heartbeat.
  • It speeds up the pace of weight loss.
  • All you need to start running is your trainers and a cute sport wear.

Depression is one major disorder that many people suffer from. In fact, a lot of people have committed suicide because of this. Cycling, however, triggers the release of hormones which help to deal with depression. With about thirty minutes daily cycling, someone who suffers from depression may not need to go through psychotherapy because cycling does the job.


We have outlined the benefits of both running and bike riding, and by now you are relaxed to know which suits you better. But more importantly, it is necessary to say that either of these exercises will not be very useful if you do not take care of the kind of things you consume. That is your diet.

For instance, you go for a bike riding, say 1 hour, and you burn 500 calories. As soon as you come back, you consume an energy drink that contains 350 calories. It's evident that you have absorbed some of the calories you just shed.

This way, running or cycling exercise will be ineffective. So, your approach to losing weight is essential.

Ways to Approach Weight Loss

  • Consider the exercise that fits you between biking vs running.
  • Set a particular time; you will be exercising: it could be early in the morning or late in the evening.
  • Set how often you will be exercising daily. For instance, 30 minutes.
  • Consider changing your diet. That is, you decide not to take anything that will increase your weight or calories level.

Cons of Biking vs Running


  • Running isn't favorable for a beginner who intends to lose weight.
  • Ease of pace can only be achieved by starting to take a brisk walk or jogging.
  • There is a risk of developing injury during running, especially if you have more fat than muscles.

Bike Riding

  • Danger of falling from the bike.
  • Biking doesn't burn as much calories as running.
  • Bike riding requires some tools to get started.

Measure Your Progress

Weight loss is very effective if either running or cycling is done as a daily routine. However, you cannot expect to lose so much weight by doing a little.

Both biking and running are effective for weight loss, but your progress should be measured by how much energy and time you invest into doing it. Whichever exercise you eventually settle for, you should put some amount of time into it and be consistent.

If you are a beginner or you have problems with your legs or back you may consider bike riding. Now that it's clear that running burns more calories than biking, you can increase the time you spend biking to ensure that at the end, you burn as much calories as expected when running.

More so, other than running, let's say 30 minutes daily which you will burn more calories than when cycling 2 hours daily, you can split your bike riding into two sessions. You can ride for 2 hours in the morning and 2 hours in the night.

By so doing, you can measure your progress, and gradually you will be on your way to losing that weight.


Considering calories burn only, running is the more preferred of the two options. Running helps you lose weight faster than biking. Also, it improves the muscles and bones as well as your cardiovascular system. What you need to start running is little or nothing.

However, bike riding offers more and better options that will see you through the weight loss program without feeling overwhelmed. It can comfortably fit into your life and become more than an exercise and a means of transporting yourself.

Although it burns fewer calories when compared to running, biking helps you go further and is more enjoyable. It's an exercise that will not be like work or as if you are forced to do it. It is now obvious when thinking of benefits of cycling vs running.

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