How to Measure Walking for Weight Loss

Regardless of your fitness level or your age, a committed walking routine paired with the right nutrition can be a great way to lose weight. To do it correctly and reach the goals you have set, you need to make sure you’re walking at the proper intensity for the right amount of time while adhering to your nutrition plan. 


The American College of Sports Medicine recommends a minimum of 30 minutes of moderate exercise each day, or 150 minutes a week. This can help you with heart health and other health conditions, like diabetes. You will want to add more if your goal is to lose weight. If you want to lose weight and keep it off, bump this number up to 200 to 300 minutes each week (3.5 to 5 hours weekly). To quantify this, walking one hour a day for four to five days a week will help you achieve and maintain weight loss. Adding any additional exercise time will boost your overall caloric burn and fitness level. 


In order to walk for weight loss, it is vital to make sure your heartrate reaches the appropriate moderate-intensity level. This equals to a heartrate that is 50% to 70% of your maximum heartrate. The best way to keep track of your heartrate is with a heartrate monitor; however, you may also track perceived exertion. Perceived exertion is a scale of 0-10. Zero is sitting. Ten is your highest level of exertion. Using this scale, moderate intensity equals a perceived intensity level of six to seven. 


Nutrition is equally as important as duration and intensity when walking for weight loss. Logging your food and exercise can help you have an accurate snapshot of the types of food and the quantity of food that you are consuming. Having this complete picture can lead to informed decisions about reducing portion sizes and cutting out those excess calories to find a healthy caloric deficit. This will allow you to lose weight and successfully keep it off. 

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