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When you're trying to lose weight, every calorie counts. To lose pounds, you have to burn more calories than you consume. If your preferred activity is walking, you won't burn as many calories per hour as you would doing more intense activities such as running or fast cycling -- but you will be able to shave calories from your daily caloric intake. The number of calories you'll burn depends on many factors, including your weight -- and the intensity and duration of your walk.
Put on a pair of comfortable walking shoes with arch support and a solid heel, athletic socks and comfortable clothing.
Walk slowly around the block or in place for five to 10 minutes to warm up.
Walk at a moderate to brisk pace. The faster you walk, the more calories you'll burn in a shorter amount of time.
Practice proper walking technique by swinging your arms, tightening your stomach muscles and tucking your pelvis in. Keep your feet at about shoulder-width apart and look ahead of you about 15 to 20 feet. How long you need to walk to burn 500 calories depends on your body weight and your intensity level. According to the Physical Activity Calorie Counter on the American Council of Exercise website, a 180-pound person needs to walk at a moderate, 3 mile-per-hour pace for one hour and 50 minutes to burn nearly 500 calories. A 220 person, meanwhile, needs only walk for one hour and 30 minutes to burn the same number of calories.
Find ways to burn more calories throughout the day by walking. Take the stairs to your office, or walk to the grocery store or the post office to burn more calories throughout the day. Any time you move your body you'll be burning calories, so try to move it as often as possible.
- To estimate the number of calories you'll burn per hour based on your body weight, enter your weight into "Body Weight" box within the American Council on Exercise's Physical Activity Calorie Calculator and select "Walking (3 MPH, Moderate Pace)" from the "Activity" dropdown list. Select "1 hour 30 minutes" from the dropdown list, and then click "Calculate" to see how many calories you would burn in that amount of time. Adjust the length of time up or down from there to determine how long you'll need to walk to burn 500 calories.