**This article was written by a guest contributor Nick from Lifter’s Haven. He has an incredibly awesome website about fitness I highly recommend you check out! Here’s his article:
Belly fat is usually the first area of fat that people want to get rid of. Having a high body fat percentage will cover up your muscles, decrease testosterone levels, and can lead to various health problems. So, Does Sprinting Burn Belly Fat?
Well, the answer may just surprise you. Sprinting has a positive effect on your ability to burn belly fat because it elevates your heart rate, increases testosterone, incites mitochondrial biogenesis, enhances fat oxidation, improves the delivery of oxygen to muscles, and increases overall TDEE.
How Does Sprinting Burn Belly Fat?
In order to lose fat, and tighten up your stomach, you need to be in a caloric deficit.
A caloric deficit is when you burn more energy daily than you eat in food. If you burn off 2,800 calories per day and only eat 2,600 calories, you will be in a caloric deficit.
The two primary methods of achieving a caloric deficit are to decrease the number of calories you eat per day and to increase your activity level.
An easy way to increase your activity level is to do cardio.
Cardio is short for cardiovascular exercise, meaning exercise that increases heart rate.
The most popular, and most effective, form of cardio is sprinting.
Some bodybuilders tend to shy away from sprinting because they feel as if it will affect their strength and recovery from training.
This is not true at all, in fact sprinting will help you build more muscle and the majority of bodybuilders are actually able to run faster than the average person.
For all people alike, sprinting is the best form of cardio to do for fat burning. It is quicker and more efficient than other kinds of cardio and has been shown to burn calories at a faster rate than any other type of anaerobic training.
Although it is not possible to spot reduce fat, doing sprints will help you decrease your body fat levels overall which will reduce your belly fat.
The Benefits of Sprinting
Sprinting is one of the most popular kinds of cardio.
Doing sprints is easy and does not require a large amount of time to complete. It also has the highest return of all types of cardio for burning fat.
Sprinting is one of the most popular kinds of cardio for good reason. Sprinting has a variety of health benefits and can improve your quality of life dramatically if you consistently implement it with your other training.
These are the proven benefits of sprinting based on the current research available:
- Stronger leg muscles
- Improved heart health
- Enhanced fat oxidation
- Better circulation
- Increased protein synthesis
- Increased TDEE
- Improved mood
- Better delivery of oxygen to muscles
All of these benefits of sprinting are supported by studies and combine together to have a positive effect on your overall physique, mental state, body fat percentage, and muscle growth.
Study Done on Sprinting and Performance
This study done on 15 wrestlers found that 2 sprint sessions per week increased blood flow, improved performance, increased power output, increased levels of testosterone, and decreased levels of cortisol.
Higher testosterone levels help the body burn fat, so sprinting has a positive effect on burning belly fat in multiple ways through several different mechanisms.
Testosterone is also important for energy levels, mood, training performance, muscle building, and life quality.
By decreasing cortisol and increasing testosterone, sprinting is able to reduce stress and positively affect the body and mind.
A second study on sprinting found that TTDE (total daily energy expenditure) increased by 10% in the participants following sprint exercise.
This 10% increase in TTDE is substantial enough to make a difference in how much fat you are able to burn day to day.
A higher TDEE means that you will burn more fat throughout the day than you would otherwise without decreasing your calories or increasing your activity level.
This third study verified the fat-burning benefits of sprinting. It found that doing sprint interval training will burn 40% more fat than HIIT (high-intensity interval training) in 60% less time.
So, sprinting can help you lose fat more efficiently and more effectively than other popular forms of cardio.
How Many Calories Do You Burn from Sprinting?
Among all kinds of cardio, sprinting burns the most calories.
For the average person doing sprints, 800-1,200 calories will be burned off per hour.
This Colorado State study on male volunteers was able to find that 2.5 minutes of sprinting burns 200 calories.
It is not possible to continually sprint for an entire hour but if you do 6 sprinting sessions per hour, you can burn off more than 1,000 calories for every hour you are training.
Burning 1,000 calories means that you essentially just erased 1-2 meals from your caloric intake. If you do sprint training every day, you could eat an extra 1-2 meals without gaining fat, or lose more fat without eating less.
When Is the Best Time To Sprint To Burn Belly Fat?
The best time to do sprints is in the morning while fasted.
It is best to do cardio in a fasted state because the body will not have calories available to burn for energy.
This means that the body will be forced to either use fat stores or muscle mass as a source of energy.
Since sprinting engages the legs and releases anabolic hormones, the body will burn fat and preserve muscle, leading to a higher rate of fat loss.
It is also easier to do cardio in the mornings since your testosterone will naturally be higher and there will be less distractions compared to other times of the day.
If you are only able to fit in a sprinting session before or after your workout, it is better to do after.
Doing cardio after weightlifting will not negatively impact the recovery from your workout as long as you give your muscles at least 30 minutes to recover. And make sure to eat a meal that supplies protein in between the lifting session and cardio session!
Conclusion of Does Sprinting Burn Belly Fat?
To conclude, sprinting does burn belly fat.
While doing sprints cannot spot reduce fat, sprinting will have a positive effect on losing fat.
Sprinting has a positive effect on your ability to burn belly fat because it elevates your heart rate, enhances fat oxidation, improves the delivery of oxygen to muscles, increases overall TDEE, increases testosterone, and incites mitochondrial biogenesis.
**Head on over and read more from Nick at Lifter’s Haven.