Walking is one of the most underrated cardiovascular activities on the planet.
The average person walks a considerable amount every single day, yet doesn’t appreciate the physical value it has to offer in a weight loss journey.
Here’s more on walking, calories burned, and how long a person should walk to lose weight.
Calories Burned By Walking
It’s important to understand the importance of variables while making a calculation such as this. For example, variables such as the terrain (flat/hilly), weight, and distance all play a role in calories burned by walking.
In general, a mile is able to burn approximately 100 calories for an individual that weighs 180 lbs. The same mile would only burn 65 calories if the person weighs 120 lbs.
As you can see, there are multiple factors at play and that’s why it’s all about progress over the course of each session. This is how you’re able to lose weight just by walking.
If you continue to walk longer distances, increase your speed (effort level) and improve your technique, the calories burned per mile will hit an optimal level every single time.
Walking Benefits: More Than Just Weight Loss?
1. Improved Cardiovascular Health
To better understand the benefits of walking, it’s important to look at what it does for the heart. Any increase in cardiovascular activity gets the heart racing and blood pumping, which is a good thing as long as it is done properly and in moderation.
This is why walking is a great stepping-stone for improved cardiovascular health as time goes on. If there is a continuous dedication to walking, a person will start to see serious improvements in their endurance.
2. Weight Loss
This is the main advantage for individuals looking to shed as much weight as possible. While walking isn’t as strenuous as running or jogging, it does require a bit of effort when completed over a longer period of time.
This is where weight loss does play a role and start to become a major plus point for those looking to get healthier.
Seeing all of the excess fat go away is one of the better feelings a person can go through and this happens because of walking on a regular basis.
3. Stronger Bones and Muscles
Walking is great for a number of reasons and one of them has to do with healthier bones.
When you are walking from point A to point B regularly, it is going to strengthen the bones and muscles quickly. The body has to adapt and it will do so in a bid to stay in optimal condition for your physical needs.
This is when a person will start to notice an uptick in how they feel and how strong they are from a physical perspective.
4. Good For You Mood
For those walking often, there is a psychological boost that comes along with walking to lose weight. As the pounds start to slip away and a new routine is developed, it can lead to a much healthier lifestyle.
This type of change is a must for those who want to be in a better place mentally and hope to do so with a walking regimen.
Top 5 Tips to Lose Weight by Walking
1. Keep a Journal
The first thing a person should do is record everything in a separate journal. This should include calories consumed, calories burned, weight, distance covered, and anything else that’s appropriate for a walking journal.
In fact, it’s also smart to list how you were feeling during the session to know when it’s okay to up the intensity or not.
By maintaining a journal, you are able to progress quickly and safely without taking risks. You won’t have to guess and that is when walking becomes an incredibly powerful workout tool for losing weight.
While the speed of walking isn’t going to have a tremendous impact on calories burned, it will impact how quickly those calories are burned. For example, a person walking at a leisurely pace may need an hour or so to burn 100 calories, but a person that’s speed walking may only require 45 minutes.
By cutting down on time, you are able to put in more effort and/or cover more distance while burning additional calories. This is the beauty of progress with any workout program and why all variables matter.
3. Stay Consistent
This is essential because any workout regimen has to be followed consistently. If you are not taking the time to walk on a regular basis (at least 3-4 times a week), it is not going to have the desired impact.
You may end up running around in circles metaphorically because of those elongated breaks.
Make sure to set a proper schedule and follow it to a tee from day one. This is when walking will become a powerful part of your new lifestyle.
4. Like the Way You Look
Too many people look at their scale as a way to feel good or not. While the numbers on the scale are helpful, they don’t tell the entire story.
Your body can look amazing and the weight may never drop as much as you want it to. This is why looking at the mirror and even taking progress pictures every week/month can be a smart idea.
This is the ideal way to know whether or not the regimen is working.
5. You Are What You Eat
This is mandatory because you can never outwalk a bad diet. You could walk around the world and still look the same with a bad diet! This is why eating fewer calories and as healthy as possible is a must.
If you’re not familiar with what clean eating looks like, or just need some tips for what diets can help you lose weight, be sure to check out our best diet list here.
While it’s easy to aim for a specific distance in the hopes of losing weight, it’s far more important to create a consistent regimen. Whether it’s walking, running, cycling, or playing a sport, there has to be a pattern for long-term results.
Make sure to put together a proper schedule and aim to burn a certain amount of calories and/or cover a specific distance every session.
This is how walking is able to lead to improved weight loss over the long haul.
Ben Corbin brings nearly 20 years of experience as a health and wellness author and writer. He holds a master’s degree, has a passion for health and fitness, and is driven to provide readers with accurate and honest diet reviews. Learn more about Ben and the DadQuarters mission at our About page.