How Many Miles Should I Walk to Lose 20 Pounds – The Calculation and Plan to Walk Off Your Excess Weight

How Many Miles Should I Walk to Lose 20 Pounds – The Calculation and Plan to Walk Off Your Excess Weight

Walking is an often underestimated form of exercise that can have amazing results when it comes to weight loss. If you’re wondering how many miles you should walk to lose 20 pounds, I’ve got the exact calculation and plan to help you walk off that excess weight. First and foremost, it’s important to understand that 1 pound of fat is equal to about 3,500 calories. So, in order to lose 20 pounds, I’ll show you the specific mileage and duration of walking you’ll need to incorporate into your routine. Additionally, I’ll provide you with a comprehensive plan that includes tips to stay motivated, avoid injury, and reach your weight loss goals safely and effectively. Let’s get started on your journey to a healthier, more active lifestyle!

Key Takeaways:

  • Calorie Deficit is Key: To lose 20 pounds, you need to create a calorie deficit either through diet, exercise, or a combination of both.
  • Walking Distance: A rough estimate is that you need to walk 100 miles to lose 1 pound, so to lose 20 pounds, you would need to walk 2000 miles.
  • Consistency is Vital: Walking regularly is essential for weight loss, aim for 30-60 minutes per day, at least 5 days a week.
  • Nutrition Matters: You can enhance weight loss by pairing your walking routine with a healthy, balanced diet that is low in calories and high in nutrients.
  • Gradual Progression: Start with a comfortable distance and gradually increase it as your fitness improves, to avoid burnout or injury.


A common question I hear from those looking to lose weight through walking is, “What type of walking is most effective?” The answer is not one-size-fits-all. Different types of walking can help you achieve your weight loss goals in different ways. Here, I’ll break down the key types of walking and how they can help you lose 20 pounds.

Endurance Walking Steady pace walking for long distances
Interval Walking Alternate between periods of high-intensity walking and rest
Power Walking Brisk pace walking with exaggerated arm movements
Recognizing The right type of walking for your body and weight loss goals is crucial

Endurance Walking

Endurance walking involves maintaining a steady, moderate pace for a longer duration. This type of walking is great for burning fat and improving your cardiovascular health. It may take longer to see weight loss results with endurance walking alone, but it’s a great way to build stamina and endurance, making it easier to tackle longer walks in the future. If you’re just starting out with a walking routine, endurance walking can be a good way to ease into the habit while still making progress towards your weight loss goal.

Interval Walking

Interval walking involves alternating between periods of high-intensity walking and periods of rest or low-intensity walking. This type of walking is effective for burning calories in a shorter amount of time. The high-intensity bursts also help to increase your overall fitness level and can lead to greater calorie burn even after you’ve finished your walk. Interval walking can be a good option for those looking to see quicker weight loss results and who are comfortable with pushing themselves to reach high-intensity levels.

Power Walking

Power walking involves walking at a brisk pace with exaggerated arm movements. This type of walking can speed up your metabolism and contribute to overall weight loss. The focus on arm movements also helps to engage your upper body muscles, making it a full-body workout. Power walking can be a great option for those looking to maximize their calorie burn and challenge themselves physically.


Assuming an average walking pace of 3 miles per hour, it will take about 6-7 hours of brisk walking to cover 20 miles. To achieve this goal, I recommend the following:

  • Gradual increase: Start with shorter walks and gradually increase the distance to avoid injury and burnout.
  • Consistency: Aim to walk at least 5 times a week to build endurance and maintain momentum.
  • Proper nutrition: Focus on a balanced diet to support your walking efforts and weight loss goals.
  • Hydration: Stay well-hydrated before, during, and after your walks.

Assume that these tips will help you stay on track and reach your 20-pound weight loss goal.

Proper Footwear and Clothing

When embarking on a walking regimen to lose 20 pounds, it’s crucial to invest in proper footwear and clothing. This includes supportive, comfortable walking shoes that provide sufficient cushioning and stability. Additionally, wear moisture-wicking clothing to keep sweat at bay and prevent chafing, especially on longer walks. Proper attire will ensure your comfort and reduce the risk of injuries, allowing you to maintain a consistent walking routine.

Hydration and Nutrition

Hydration and nutrition play a pivotal role in supporting your walking efforts to lose 20 pounds. Staying well-hydrated is essential for performance and recovery, so be sure to drink water before, during, and after your walks. As for nutrition, focus on a balanced diet consisting of lean proteins, whole grains, fruits, and vegetables to fuel your body and aid in weight loss. Proper hydration and nutrition will optimize your walking sessions and contribute to achieving your weight loss goal.

Setting Realistic Goals

When aiming to lose 20 pounds through walking, setting realistic goals is paramount. While it’s possible to shed the weight through consistent walking, it’s important to pace yourself and avoid setting overly ambitious targets that may lead to burnout or injury. Incremental weight loss, such as 1-2 pounds per week, is a healthy and achievable goal. By setting realistic targets, you’ll maintain motivation and stay committed to your walking plan for sustainable results.

Step-by-Step Plan

Keep in mind that walking to lose 20 pounds requires dedication and consistency. Here’s a step-by-step plan to help you reach your weight loss goal:

Step 1: Calculate the miles needed to lose 20 pounds
Step 2: Create a walking schedule
Step 3: Monitor progress and adjust as needed

Calculating the Miles Needed to Lose 20 Pounds

To calculate the miles needed to lose 20 pounds, I recommend using the general guideline of walking 1 mile to burn about 100 calories. Since 1 pound equals about 3,500 calories, you can estimate that it would take walking approximately 35 miles to lose 1 pound. Therefore, to lose 20 pounds, you would need to walk around 700 miles.

Creating a Walking Schedule

When creating a walking schedule, I suggest starting with shorter distances or durations if you are new to walking for exercise. Gradually increase the distance or time as your fitness improves. Aim for at least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity walking per week, spread out over several days. For example, you could walk 30 minutes a day for 5 days a week.

Monitoring Progress and Adjusting as Needed

It’s important to track your progress and make adjustments to your walking plan as needed. Weigh yourself regularly to monitor your weight loss progress. If you find that you are not losing weight at the expected rate, you may need to increase the distance or intensity of your walks. On the other hand, if you are losing weight too quickly, you may need to adjust your walking plan to avoid losing muscle mass.

Factors to Consider

For successful weight loss through walking, several factors need to be considered to create an effective plan.

Age and Fitness Level

Age and Fitness Level

When determining how many miles you should walk to lose 20 pounds, it’s important to take into account your age and current fitness level. If you are younger and more physically fit, you may be able to handle a more rigorous walking routine. On the other hand, if you are older or have been relatively sedentary, it’s essential to start slow and gradually increase your walking distance to avoid injury. Your age and fitness level will also impact how quickly you can realistically expect to lose weight through walking.

Terrain and Weather

Terrain and Weather

The terrain and weather of the area in which you plan to walk can have a significant impact on your ability to stick to your walking routine. Walking on hilly terrain or rough trails will require more effort and may result in a slower pace compared to walking on flat, paved surfaces. Similarly, extreme weather conditions such as excessive heat, cold, or rain can make it more challenging to maintain a consistent walking schedule. It’s important to consider these factors when planning your walking routine and be prepared to make adjustments as needed.

Time Available to Commit to Walking

Time Available to Commit to Walking

Another crucial factor to consider is the time that you can realistically commit to walking. If you have a busy schedule, it may be challenging to find time for longer walks. However, even short, frequent walks throughout the day can still contribute to your weight loss goals. It’s essential to assess how much time you can dedicate to walking and create a plan that aligns with your schedule. The key is to make walking a regular part of your routine, even if it means breaking it up into smaller sessions throughout the day.

Pros and Cons

Unlike other forms of exercise, walking offers a range of benefits and potential drawbacks. It’s important to consider both the positive and negative aspects before embarking on a walking routine for weight loss.

Pros Cons
I can do it anywhere, anytime It may take longer to see results
Low impact on joints Difficulty in maintaining high intensity
Improves mood and mental well-being Weather-dependent
Burns calories and aids in weight loss Potential for boredom and monotony
Increases cardiovascular fitness May not build as much muscle as other exercises

Benefits of Walking for Weight Loss

Walking is an excellent form of exercise for weight loss due to its accessibility and simplicity. It can be done anywhere and anytime, requiring no special equipment or facilities. Additionally, walking at a brisk pace can help burn a significant number of calories, making it an effective tool for shedding excess pounds. Not only does walking contribute to physical health, but it also provides mental benefits, such as reducing stress and improving mood.

Potential Challenges and Pitfalls

While walking is a great form of exercise, there are some potential challenges and pitfalls to consider. One of the main drawbacks is that it may take longer to see significant weight loss results compared to more intense forms of exercise. Additionally, walking may not build as much muscle as other activities, and it can be challenging to maintain a high intensity level. Weather can also be a factor, as outdoor walking may be limited by rain, snow, or extreme temperatures. Finally, some individuals may find walking to be monotonous, leading to boredom and a lack of motivation.

It’s important to weigh the pros and cons of walking for weight loss to determine if it is the right exercise choice for your individual needs and goals.


Taking this into account, I now understand that in order to lose 20 pounds by walking, I need to maintain a calorie deficit and aim to walk at least 5 miles every day. By following the calculation and plan outlined in this article, I am confident that I can reach my weight loss goal by incorporating regular walking into my daily routine. It is essential to remember that consistency and dedication are key to achieving weight loss through walking, and by staying committed to this plan, I can expect to see positive results in the long run. With the right mindset and the determination to make a change, I am ready to take on this challenge and work towards a healthier, fitter version of myself.


Q: Is it possible to lose 20 pounds by walking alone?

A: Yes, it is possible to lose 20 pounds by walking, but it also depends on various factors such as your current weight, walking speed, and diet.

Q: How many miles should I walk to lose 20 pounds?

A: On average, you would need to walk approximately 100 miles to lose 20 pounds. However, this number can vary depending on factors such as your body weight, walking pace, and diet.

Q: What is the recommended walking pace to lose weight?

A: To effectively lose weight through walking, it is recommended to maintain a brisk walking pace of around 3 to 4 miles per hour. This speed can help burn calories and improve cardiovascular health.

Q: How often should I walk to achieve weight loss goals?

A: To see significant weight loss results, aim to walk for at least 30 minutes to an hour most days of the week. Consistency is key in any weight loss regimen, including walking.

Q: What dietary changes should I make while walking to lose weight?

A: Along with walking, focus on consuming a balanced diet that includes plenty of fruits, vegetables, lean protein, and whole grains. It is important to create a calorie deficit by consuming fewer calories than you burn through walking and other activities.

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