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7 Secrets of Skinny Runners

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Updated April 09, 2014

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Skinny runners watch their portion sizes.
Shrimp salad
Annabelle Breakey
Running can definitely be a powerful tool in your weight loss or weight maintenance efforts, but you can't expect to lose weight or stay thin with running alone. Runners who stay thin know that they must also follow healthy eating and lifestyle habits.

Many people assume that runners, especially long-distance runners, can eat whatever they want because they'll burn off the calories. But skinny runners know that running doesn't give them a license to eat whatever they want, whenever they want.

Runners who stay thin watch their portion sizes. They stop eating before they get too full. They often take a doggie bag home when dining out, because typical restaurant portions are way too big. They make sure they eat slowly and pay attention to when they start to feel full.

What to Do:

Try these tips that skinny runners use to watch their portion sizes:

  • Get familiar with standard portion sizes. They may actually be smaller than you think. For example, three ounces of meat is about the size of a deck of cards. One serving size of pasta or rice is about the size of a tennis ball.
  • Eat slowly and eliminate distractions. You're more likely to overeat if you're not paying attention to what or how much you're eating. Don't eat in front of the TV or the computer. Chew slowly –- you'll enjoy your food more and eat less.
  • Try putting smaller amounts of food on your plate or using smaller plates. If you put more food in front of you, you'll eat it because it's there.
  • Eat your fruits and veggies first. They're low in calories and they'll fill you up, so you'll be less tempted to eat more of the higher-calorie foods. For example, start your dinners with a salad and a low-calorie dressing.
  • More Ways to Control Your Portion Sizes

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