Walking for fat loss

Good morning, %FIRSTNAME%.

Q: is walking alone enough to burn fat?

It depends.

Let me do what I do - breakdown questions to the point that people will probably stop asking them.

The big question is where is energy balance sitting right now?

If you are sitting at energy balance, or slight surplus, then walking will likely be sufficient to increase energy expenditure and move into an energy deficit, causing fat loss.

However, if you are in a surplus, then it depends on the size of the surplus and the amount of walking that you will be able to do.

Walking doesn’t burn a bomb of calories, around 300 kcal per hour for an 80kg person, and increasing with body weight.

The other good thing about walking is that it predominantly uses body fat as a fuel source, due to the fact you are working from 40 - 65% of maximal intensity.

The main variable with walking is how long you can do it for. Walking a couple of hours a day will make a huge impact on fat loss, due to the increase in energy expenditure.

But the practicality of dedicating that much time to walking is often a challenge.

My recommendation is to walk for shorter periods of time, faster, and ideally with some hills thrown in there.

Three ten-minute walks at 5km/h with some hills thrown in there will burn more energy than a single 30-minute walk at 4.5km/h. Over the course of a week, this can add up.

To answer the question: yes, walking alone can be enough to burn fat, but it will depend on energy balance.

Tom Fitzgerald