Can you lose weight by walking? The simple answer is yes of course you can, but please read on to understand the fine print! Since the introduction of the smart watch, walking has become increasingly popular. You might have set yourself a daily step count goal, completed a 10,000 step challenge on You Tube or even tried Nordic Walking. However to lose weight by walking there are a number of other factors you must consider. This will ensure fat is truly burnt and you get the results you want.
Let’s start by outlining the benefits of regular walking:
- Reduces the risk of osteoporosis.
- Improves circulation, in turn lowering the risk of heart disease.
- Improves your mood.
- Increases oxygen delivery to joints which helps to strengthen them.
- Burns calories.
The latter point is the one you might be the most interested in. Walking burns calories and therefore will increase your calorie deficit. However, when your goal is to lose weight then it’s the calorie deficit that is key. Yes you can lose weight by walking if you are in a calorie deficit. No you can’t lose weight by walking if you consume too many calories in combination. Check out our blog that explains all you need to know about a calorie deficit here and then come back to this blog to see how you can use walking as a tool to aid your fat loss.
Here’s an example that will illustrate how you can incorporate walking in order to reach your weight loss goal. If your TDEE (total daily energy expenditure) is 2000 calories per day then you will need to be in a 500 calorie deficit each day to burn 1 pound of fat (here’s a bit more information on what it takes to burn a pound of fat). Walking for an hour can burn up to 200 calories which means that you can afford to eat up to 1700 calories to be in a sufficient deficit. It really is that simple. So if walking is your thing then grab your trainers and incorporate it into your daily routine!
Be mindful of your smart watch:
Using walking to lose weight can be a great motivator to get you outdoors but there’s one thing I will point out and that is to be mindful of the relationship you develop with your smart watch. Setting yourself a 10,000 step goal every day might become quite tedious and difficult to maintain. I have seen it cause many online clients negative emotions, such as guilt, when they don’t hit their target. I have also had to help wean clients off using their smart watch in order to improve their mental health and increase the enjoyment they experience during their fat loss journey. I’m not saying don’t use it, just that you should observe any mood or negative behavioural changes. Nobody wants to be marching round their living room in the evening to catch up to their target if they don’t need to. That is when it becomes an onerous task.
Make it a habit:
If you choose to use walking to help you lose weight then I would suggest making it a habit you look forward to rather than dread. You can do this by walking somewhere peaceful and scenic, listening to music or walking with a friend. You can also incorporate more walking into your lifestyle, which will mean you rely less on a long walk at the end of the day. Here’s a list of suggestions you can try:
- choose a car parking space furthest away from your work or the shop
- use the toilet upstairs if you are down
- walk those short distances that you might usually drive
- go for a stroll during your lunch break
- plan activities on the weekend that involve more walking rather than sitting.
If you are about to embark on a weight loss journey and want any more information or help please head to our homepage, fill in the form at the bottom and we will be in touch.