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Calories Burned By Walking: Can You Lose Weight Walking?

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Walking is an excellent form of exercise that increases weight loss and gives many other health benefits. Walking to places more frequently is a common first start for people trying to lose weight. Many people do not consider walking to be as effective at weight loss than some other more high intensity forms of exercise. But even a one hour walk burns calories and can help you lose weight.

Walking is perfect for people who are just starting their weight loss journey before more intensive forms of exercise can be included into your exercise regimen. While walking is similar to running, in the sense that it provides you with a cardiovascular workout, it is a completely different experience altogether. The benefits of walking can be enormous and can help anyone achieve their personal fitness goals without much exercise at all.

Calories Burned By Walking

Physical activity and cutting calories is the best combination that helps the most with weight loss. Exercising by itself is not enough, you could do an intense 3 hour workout regimen and if you eat more calories than you burn, you will still put on weight. So, it is especially important to diet if losing weight is the main reason you exercise. Walking is a simple form of exercise, and it is this simplicity that attracts many people to start walking as part of their weight loss journey.

Walking is an effective workout to burn calories and improve your health. Not only does it help you burn calories, but it’s also a great way to get your blood flowing and increase your mood. Walking however is one of the most underrated forms of physical exercise when it comes to weight loss, this is despite there being many research studies that demonstrate the health benefits of walking.

Everyone has heard of the phrase that walking 10,000 steps a day will help you get healthier and fitter. While not everyone has the time to walk 10,000 steps a day, walking between 7,000 to 8,000 steps a day has similar health benefits.

sin or slim walking burning calories walking routine calories burned by walking featured image

Can You Lose Weight If Your Only Exercise Is Walking?

If you walk every day you will lose weight. It is a slow and steady way of losing weight, but if you keep walking everyday over increasing distances, speeds, and over hilly ground you will lose weight.

Walking is classed as moderate cardio exercise, so 30 minutes of brisk pace walking a day, assuming your walking speed is consistent for the duration of your walk will lead to about 1 pound of weight loss a week. A quick pace will burn more calories and make your body work harder than a slow pace.

Walking everyday can help you lose weight. A study in 2013 found that women that walk to work everyday had a lower BMI score and lower risk of obesity, so simply avoiding driving and walking will give you a boost to your health and well-being.

Over time it is likely that you will start exercising with more energetic forms of exercise such as running or strength training. But if you are just starting on your exercise, weight loss, and healthy living journey walking is a great way of getting fit enough to tackle more strenuous forms of exercise to lose even more and gain even more fitness.

How Many Calories Burned By Walking?

If you are carefully counting and tracking the calories that you burn to help with weight loss or your fitness, there are several important things that affect how many calories you burn. Key factors include how much you currently weigh, your current dieting habits, how long you exercise, and how quickly you exercise.

For the average person their walking speed is 3 miles per hour, or just under 5 kilometres an hour. If you walked for an hour at this walking speed you could burn 300 calories. So, when you are going out or socialising, think to yourself if the journey can be made by walking rather than driving. If the journey is slightly too far, you might also consider cycling instead of driving. A 30 minute cycle ride will burn 200 calories. I have written about how cycling is a simple way to help you feel good about yourself.

These figures are all relevant for flat ground, if you walked on hilly ground you will burn even more calories. Walking uphill for an hour will add around 200 more calories burned. Walking uphill will also help boost leg and glute strength, which will help you to walk for even longer distances at a faster walking speed which means even more calories burned. How fast you walk and how much you weigh really impact the number of calories you can burn. Walking is a great way to burn calories and lose weight. However, it's important to be mindful of your balance so that you don't become too overweight or sore.

If you add 30 minutes of brisk pace walking to your daily routine, you could burn 150 calories. The more you walk and the faster you walk, the more calories you will burn. The actual calorie burn will depend on how much you weigh.

As I said, 3 miles per hour is the average walking speed. If you increased that to 3.5 miles per hour you could burn up to 350 calories. That could increase to 460 calories if you walked 4 miles per hour, which is a very fast walking speed. Even a more casual 2 miles per hour could help you lose up to 180 calories over one hour.

Calories Burned Walking By Distance: Walking Calorie Calculator

If You Weigh Between 120-140 Pounds And Walked For An Hour

  • If you walk an average speed (3 mph) on flat ground you would burn 200 calories.

  • If you walk a fast pace speed (4 mph) on flat ground you would burn 350 calories.

  • If you walk an average speed (3 mph) uphill you would burn an extra 150 calories (350 calories).

  • Walking downhill burns fewer calories as it doesn't use much energy, so for best results walking uphill it is better to do so on a treadmill.

  • If You Weigh Between 140-160 Pounds And Walked For An Hour

  • If you walk an average speed (3 mph) on flat ground you would burn 225 calories.

  • If you walk a fast pace speed (4 mph) on flat ground you would burn 430 calories.

  • If you walk an average speed (3 mph) uphill you would burn an extra 275 calories (400 calories).

  • If You Weigh Between 160-180 Pounds And Walked For An Hour

  • If you walk an average speed (3 mph) on flat ground you would burn 255 calories.

  • If you walk a fast pace speed (4 mph) on flat ground you would burn 460 calories.

  • If you walk an average speed (3 mph) uphill you would burn an extra 195 calories (450 calories).

  • How You Can Increase Calories Burned When Walking?

    There are a few ways to burn even more calories when walking. I would suggest to try these once you are used to walking comfortably for an hour.

    Walk On Inclines

    Walking everyday can help you lose weight. A study in 2013 found that women that walk to work everyday had a lower BMI score and lower risk of obesity, so simply avoiding driving and walking will give you a boost to your health and well-being.

    As shown in the section above, walking uphill uses more energy and can burn more calories than walking on flat ground. So if you are walking outside and you have the choice of walking on flat ground or walking up a hill, choose to walk uphill. Your overall fitness will increase and your legs will get stronger too. If walking on a treadmill try increasing the incline setting, you should see how many more calories you burn on the display compared to walking on a flat surface.

    Do Speed Intervals

    Interval training is where you mix up the speed at which you exercise. So, if you are planning on walking for an hour, instead of maintaining that walking pace for the entire hour, increase speed for short bursts, so every few minutes of walking at 2.5 mph increase speed to 3.5 mph for a minute. Then once the minute has elapsed, go back to the original speed. Do this at least 5 to 10 times each hour, and gradually increase the duration and number as your body gets to the exercise routine. This is similar to the underling theory behind high intensity interval training.

    Add Extra Weight

    As I showed above, weighing more burns more calories. So, if you add extra weight as you walk you will burn more calories. You can do this in a number of ways. You can add weight straps to your wrists and/or ankles, you can put something heavy in a backpack and wear it on your back, you can wear a weighted vest that allows you to add extra weights. You can even break up your walking routine with some strength training, read here for some of the benefits of weightlifting and strength training.

    Walk Faster

    Increasing the speed that you walk burns more calories. As shown above increasing your walking speed from 3mph to 4mph nearly doubles the amount of calories you burn. 4mph is a very fast walking speed so you might not be able to keep walking at that speed when you first start walking for exercise. This is fine, the best way is to work on your overall health first than expect to walk for five hours without any issues straightaway.

    The phrase learn to walk before you can run is important for personal motivation, but it applies literally to exercising. Set yourself achievable goals, such as adding a 30 minute walk to your daily routine, let your body and your legs get used to that amount of walking and then steadily increase the distance and the speed. This is especially important for people that live a sedentary lifestyle.

    sin or slim walking uphill in a forest

    How Does Walking Compare To Running When It Comes To Weight Loss?

    Walking burns calories and is a great way to start your weight loss journey, there will come a time when you start wanting to lose more weight or walk faster. This is normally when you start thinking about jogging or running instead of walking. Running will burn even more calories compared to walking, so when you are ready to start running you should definitely try it. How many calories you burn while running depends on many of the same things as burning calories while walking, how fast you run, for how long you run, and how much you weigh.

    As a general rule of thumb, running for the same amount of time as walking burns slightly more than double the number of calories.

    If You Weigh Between 120-140 Pounds And Ran For An Hour

  • If you run at 5mph on flat ground you would burn 500 calories.

  • If you run at 7mph on flat ground you would burn 680 calories.

  • If You Weigh Between 140-160 Pounds And Ran For An Hour

  • If you run at 5mph on flat ground you would burn 600 calories.

  • If you run at 7mph on flat ground you would burn 800 calories.

  • If You Weigh Between 160-180 Pounds And Ran For An Hour

  • If you run at 5mph on flat ground you would burn 670 calories.

  • If you run at 7mph on flat ground you would burn 900 calories.

  • How Many Calories Does Walking 10,000 Steps Burn?

    For the average man, walking 10,000 steps a day burns around 500 calories, whereas for a smaller than average woman this is reduced to around 300 calories. If you add this into your daily walking routine you should easily be able to reach 10,000 steps.

    For an average stride and speed, walking for an hour is about 3,500 steps, walking slowly for an hour is around 2,000 steps. If you are already walking in your daily life reaching 10,000 steps should be simple.

    If you walk on the treadmill for an hour at 3mph, you will need to find the remaining 6,500 steps in your normal daily routine, which is between two to three miles of walking.

    If you walked 10,000 steps a day, assuming a low calorie diet or Keto diet, you would lose around 1 pound per week from just walking. The best way to measure how many calories you have burned is with a wearable fitness tracker.

    How Many Calories Burned Walking A Mile?

    Here is a chart to help you work out how many calories you can burn walking for one mile. As above, how many calories you burn depends on weight and speed so I have provided how many calories you can burn per mile depending on how fast you walk and for ten different body weights between 100 pounds to 300 pounds. For example, a 140 pound person burns 80 calories walking at 4mph.

    sin or slim burned calories for a man and a woman for different weights