Will Walking Eight Miles a Day Help Me Lose Weight?

The health benefits of walking are well-known, and it is an exercise that is easy to get started. However, many people are unsure how far and how long to walk. Walking 8 miles a day is a great form of exercise that can help you burn calories.

Walking can help you lose weight. (Image: Aaron Hawkins/E+/GettyImages)

Tip

When combined with proper nutrition, walking 8 miles a day can help you lose weight. This much walking is time-consuming, however, so it may not be a realistic option for everyone.

Walking for Weight Loss

If you want to lose weight, it is natural to turn to cardio exercise like walking and running. To lose weight, one must burn more calories than they consume. One way to do this is to burn a lot of calories through exercise while also implementing a caloric deficit in your diet.

There are many different forms of exercise you can do to lose weight, but many turn to walking because it is low-impact, beginner-friendly and effective. In a 2015 study published in Lakartidningen, the journal of the Swedish Medical Association, researchers found that walking at least 150 minutes per week is needed to maintain a stable weight. The amount of walking is double for weight loss and must be complemented with a change in diet.

The benefits of walking exceed weight loss. Walking is associated with many health benefits, including decreased risk of heart disease, type 2 diabetes and Alzheimer's. There are many reasons why you should consider walking 8 miles a day — weight loss is just one of them.

Walking 8 Miles a Day

Walking 8 miles a day burns hundreds of calories. In some people, this much walking may even burn more than 1,000 calories.

According to Harvard Health Publishing, walking for weight loss depends on the distance you walk and your body weight. Depending on your body weight, you can burn up to 85-135 calories per mile. Walking 8 miles a day would result in approximately 680-1,080 calories burned.

The drawback of walking 8 miles a day is that it is more time-consuming than other forms of exercise. Therefore, it is not realistic for people with busy schedules.

How Much Should You Walk?

It is clear that walking can help you lose weight. The question remains: How many miles a day should you walk? Many people fixate on a certain number of steps, miles or minutes, but you should simply walk more than you currently do.

In a 2015 study published in the European Journal of Sport Science, researchers studied the correlation between pedometer-tracked steps and weight loss in obese women. By increasing the average amount of steps per day, participants saw a reduction in body fat percentage and waist measurements. Researchers recommend using a pedometer to track steps in order to consciously increase the amount of walking.

If you can fit walking 8 miles a day in your schedule, then go for it. If not, try to increase the amount of walking you do by 30-60 minutes a day.

How to Get Started

Preparing yourself for walking regularly is simple. Here are some ideas to help you get started:

  • Wear comfortable and supportive walking shoes.
  • Use a pedometer or fitness tracker to stay motivated.
  • Do not forget to bring a water bottle to prevent dehydration.
  • Challenge yourself with new trails, routes or hills.
  • Walk with your dog or a friend for accountability.

Walking 8 miles a day might seem intimidating, but you can spread it out throughout the day. Taking your dog for a walk and going for an evening stroll every day adds up quickly.

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