Running in the open field can feel amazing. But do you want to take it to the next level? You can carry some weights in your hand and run. Running with weights in hands will be more challenging for you.
Running is great cardio. But adding some extra weights can have its benefits. You can burn more calories. Your speed may increase or decrease depending on your strength and body type. Also, your bone density may improve.
If you train with extra weights, it can make you stronger. But the real question is, do you want to take this path? I mean, there are many other ways to build lean mass. There is weight training that you can try.
If you want to increase the difficulty level of running, you can undoubtedly carry weight. But be careful, with extra weights, there’s more chance of fatal accidents.
Running with weights in hands
There are five ways to run with weight.
- You can add weights to your ankle
- You can wear a heavy weighted vest
- You can carry weights in bare hand
- You can attach wrist weights if you don’t want to carry it
- You can have a backpack with added weight
According to American Council on Exercise, if you run with 1 to 3 pounds of weight added to your body, it will be great for your aerobic fitness.
When you run without any weight, you will spend x calories. But when you run with weights, that x amount of calories will increase. Because you have to cover the same distance with more weight. And for that, you need to spend more energy. Which means you will burn more calories.
Running with weights in hands can make you stronger. There are multiple types of research done in the past that completely agree with this argument.
Young men who wore a weighted vest and ran saw a significant change in their strength and agility. Women pass a complex state after they hit their menopause. A test was held on these women who conducted the test for 12 weeks, and they saw improvement in their isokinetic strength.
We know there are mainly two types of muscle fibers; slow-twitch and fast-twitch muscle fibers. Running with weights can improve your fast-twitch muscle fibers. But will that be a good way? That’s debatable.
We all know running can increase your heart rate. It also depends on how much difficult the run is for you. If you’re running on a smooth track, your heart rate will be x, and if you’re running towards a hill, your heart rate will be y. In addition, your heart rate will always change depending on certain conditions.
For example, if you run with extra weight, you will lose more calories. Therefore you will experience a fast heartbeat. If you have any medical condition, I’d suggest that you keep a heart rate monitor with you to keep track of heart rate.
If you have a pair of dumbbells, you can take them with you and give the process a try. First, run without dumbbells for the first 10-15 minutes. That way, your body will be charged, and your heart rate will start pumping. Then you can run with dumbbells in your hand.
You don’t have to hold it too tightly. Just take a firm grip on them and run slowly. It will be best not to go too far from your house. That way, if you feel uncomfortable holding weights, you can drop them at your home.
Depending on your goals, your heart rate can vary. So first, you need to figure out the best heart rate for you. There is numerous online calculator that will help you measure your heart rate.
If you’re practicing for a half marathon and thinking that running with weights can help you with your training, you should also be careful about your diet plan—especially what to eat before and after a half marathon. Running with proper gear is also crucial as it will affect your timing.
Whenever you’re carrying extra weight, be cautious about the injury. Don’t add too many weights at once. As it’s going to be a new experience for you, it’s better if you take things slowly.
If you feel any pain in any joint or muscle, stop the activity at once. You can consult a doctor if you feel pain. Don’t try to cover too much distance with weight in hand in the beginning. Cover small baby steps at a time.
Having weights can make you slow, and with each step, you may feel pressure on your joint, knee, hips, and spine. If you have a specific running style, you may also face difficulty maintaining that with those weights on.
Running with weights in hands can be a great way to tone your arms, but it also comes with its own risk.
If you feel uncomfortable running with weights, you can try some alternative exercises as well. For example, you are slowly running in your stairs and towards a hill.
You may feel tempted to see many athletes running with weights. But that doesn’t mean you have to try that.
There’s also a sport called wife-carrying. You have to carry your wife and finish a particular track in that sport. The first one to complete the route will win the race. So unless you have to participate in that race, you don’t need to carry weights during running.
Moreover, running is a sport that you should enjoy while doing it. If regular running has become easy for you and you want to spice it up, then sure, you can carry any weights with you.
Wearable weight can cause swelling, joint pain; you may tear your ligaments as well. It’s not 100% safe.
Military people use this method to increase their strength and agility. Firefighters also train to carry weights, as they need to save other people during danger. Different CrossFit competitions have weight running.
Have fun on your running track. Stay safe.
Btw, do you know why are runners so skinny?