Does walking burn belly fat? Walking is an excellent low impact exercise that has many benefits. Today I want to take a look and see if you can actually shed those extra pounds around your waistline by the simple act of walking.
I love to walk, and I do so frequently throughout the day. As a guy who has been dealing with back problems for about 20 years, I have learned the value of walking for lower back pain. What was not always so obvious is that walking can actually help burn that unwanted belly fat.
Now to actually get the fat burning incinerator fired up, you need two critical ingredients, time and a brisk pace. A leisurely stroll to the mailbox may not produce the exact results you are looking for. Of course, any exercise is better than not exercising at all.
Does walking burn belly fat?
As I mentioned, there are two crucial ingredients for burning belly fat while walking. First, you need to walk long enough to get to the fat you have stored. The longer you walk, the better opportunity to have to burn more fat.
The second ingredient for fat burning success is your pace. You have to get your heart rate up to the point that you are in the fat burning zone. Again, a leisurely stroll around the block is not going to be as beneficial as a fast-paced 45-minute walk.
Fat burning zone
I think everyone would love to live in the fat burning zone, am I right? This zone refers to working out at a pace so that your heartbeat is about 60-70 percent of your maximum heart rate.
But first, I am really sorry, but there is going to be some math involved, and I should have warned you at the beginning of this post. We will get into the math in a minute…there will be a test later.
Now, as a general guideline, your maximum heart rate is about 220 minus your age. If you are 45 years old, your maximum heart rate is 175 beat per minute. So that would be 100%. The fat burning zone is about 60-70% of that, so roughly 106-124 beats per minute.
How to track your heart rate
Now that you are armed with this information, how do you track your heart rate?
If you have a heart rate monitor, smartphone or smartwatch, tracking your heart rate is easy peasy lemon squeezy. If not, you can do it the old fashioned way, using your finger on your carotid artery (neck) or your radial artery (wrist). Take your pulse for 10 seconds and multiply by 6 and there you have it. See, I told you there was going to be math!
How to walk and burn belly fat
I recommend a 45-minute walk because this gives you enough time to get to that stored up body fat. Use the first ten minutes or so to work up to your fat burning heart rate. This will allow your body to burn through sugar energy and get ready to burn fat, and that’s the good stuff.
Longer walks will help you burn even more fat. A 60-minute walk will give you plenty of time for a warmup and cool down. The key is to get to the fat burning zone and stay there for an extended period.
How often should you walk to burn belly fat?
According to the Health Department, adults should do at least 150 minutes (2.5 hours) per week of moderate-intensity exercise. This is where walking comes into play. The 150-minute recommendation works out to be just over three 45-minute walks per week hitting the fat burning zone. I am sure a lot of people can manage to do that. If you can get your heart rate in the zone by walking, you will be walking just a few days per week.
That brings me to another point, the fat burning zone can vary depending on your fitness level, so keep that in mind. If you are super fit you will have to walk faster for a more extended period than someone who does not exercise regularly.
When should you walk?
Whenever it is convenient for you to get out and set aside 45-minutes is an excellent time to go for a brisk walk. I don’t always have time for 45 full minutes, so I get out for some shorter walks throughout the day. I take a quick, fast-paced 20-minute walk for my lunch break at work and most nights go for a walk with my wife, again at least 20-minutes.
Not only are my walks a great low impact exercise for back pain, but walking also gives me a chance to take a break at work, and get caught up with my wife in the evenings.
I recommend that you wear comfortable, loose clothing when you get out for your walks. Oh, and you definitely need a great pair of walking shoes. Walking can take a toll on your feet so make sure you have some good solid shoes.
Conclusion: Does walking burn belly fat?
I hope you have enjoyed this article. As you can see, walking can indeed help you burn belly fat, and it is a great low impact exercise. If you are like me and have some limitations like a bad back, or knee problems, walking can be a fantastic way to get rid of some extra pounds.
Make sure have a good pair of shoes, and set aside time in your day for your physical activity. If you can get out during work, you might be surprised at how productive you will be at your job.
If you have any questions or comments, please leave them below, and I will get back to you as soon as I can.