How to Count and Track Calories Burned Walking

Walking is an excellent form of exercise to build strong legs and healthy joints while also burning calories. Many people who start a walking program like to track their progress as they build mileage and increase their fitness levels.

Understanding your distance and calories burned while walking can help you achieve your goals. Read on to learn how to best track your efforts with calorie guides and calculators.

How to Track Calories Burned While Walking

You can measure calories burned while walking using different types of data. For example, you might use your distance, workout duration, or pace to determine how many calories you burned and how hard you worked. Here are some ways you can track your walking calories.

Calories Per Mile While Walking

Use a calculator to determine calories burned while walking by entering your weight, approximate pace, and distance walked.

Calories Per Minute While Walking

To understand how many calories you burn based on time, you’ll see the number varies based on factors including your weight and the pace at which you walk. For example, a 140-pound person burns about 4 calories per minute while walking 3 miles per hour. Therefore, in about 30 minutes, this person would burn roughly 112 calories. But a 200-pound person burns about 5 calories per minute or about 159 calories per 30-minute interval.

The distance walked and walking calories burned can also be computed by entering your weight, pace, and minutes into a pacing calculator. Do not forget that they are estimations that do not account for wind resistance, inclination, or gender.

Calories Based on Step Count

View how many calories you burn based on your step count using a fitness tracker on your walking workouts. This calculation considers your weight and height to get an estimate of stride length.

For example, a 160-pound person who is 5′ 4″ tall would burn about 181 calories walking 5,000 steps. But a taller person (5′ 10 tall) who weighs the same amount would burn 198 calories walking the same number of steps.

Using Pace to Determine Calories Burned Walking

Many exercise experts recommend walking at a moderate pace.1 You might wonder whether your walking pace is fast, moderate, or easy. There are different ways to measure your pace based on miles or kilometers traveled.

Based on your walking intensity, you can estimate how long it will take for you to walk different distances. This information can help you to plan routes and walking workouts.

There are a variety of charts available that help you determine how long it will take to walk that distance at three different paces. You can see conversions from miles to kilometers and kilometers to miles.

How to Use a Fitness Tracker

Many fitness trackers will estimate your calories burned by exercise and total calories burned. For instance, if you wear a Fitbit, you will see its reading of your total calorie burn, including your basic metabolic rate and exercise calories. This enables you to balance the calories you eat against the calories burned.

Diet-friendly fitness trackers such as Fitbit and Garmin include or link to a food log app where you can track what you eat to balance those calories with what you burn.

One common app that links to many fitness trackers is MyFitnessPal. The best apps allow you to save common foods and meals and analyze recipes for calories and nutrition per serving. Many allow you to scan barcodes on the food you eat and include items from fast food and chain restaurants.

However, accuracy is always an issue with any calorie figure from fitness trackers. Calories shown on treadmills and other exercise machines may also overestimate or underestimate calories burned while walking. Be sure to input your correct weight as they often base the burn on that figure.

A Word From Verywell

Remember that the best exercise plan is the one that works for you. If you are just starting, you may want to choose one simple metric to track, such as the amount of time you walk each day and week. As you see changes and progress toward your goal, you can consider other metrics and track calories burned while walking.

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