Walking Workout Schedule for Weight Loss

Use this Plan to Walk Off Weight

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Do you need a weight loss walking plan that works? Following a schedule will help you be consistent with your walking habit, but it doesn't have to be the same old grind every day. It is good to alternate short walking days and long walking days, with a rest day as needed.

Use a Brisk Walking Pace to Burn Fat

Your target walking pace should be a brisk walking pace at 50 percent to 70 percent of your maximum heart rate.

At this pace, you should be breathing noticeably but able to speak in full sentences. You may even aim for the maximum fat-burning zone of 60 percent to 70 percent of your maximum heart rate. Sustain that pace for 45 minutes or more to burn stored fat. See what your heart rate should be, based on your age.

Short Day Weight Loss Walking Workout

Warm up at an easy pace for five minutes. Speed up to a brisk walk at the target pace for 30 minutes. Slow to an easy pace for five minutes. You may want to do a gentle stretching routine after your warm-up or after you finish your walk.

If you don't have time for a sustained walk, find the time to take two or three 15-minute walks. See how to maximize your 15-minute walk.

Long Day Weight Loss Walking Workout

Warm up for five to 10 minutes at an easy pace. Stretch. Walk at the target brisk walking pace for 60 minutes. Slow to an easy pace for five minutes.

Finish with gentle stretching.

Long Easy Day Weight Loss Walking Workout

Warm up for five to 10 minutes at an easy pace. Stretch. Walk at the target brisk walking pace for 30 minutes. Slow to an easy pace for additional 30 to 90 minutes. Finish with gentle stretching. The Long Easy Day may be spiced up by joining in a local charity walking event or joining a walking group or club for their workouts.

Days Off

When you are walking for weight loss, you should take no more than one to two days off in a week. On your day off, you can still enjoy easy strolls and you want to ensure you aren't sitting for long periods.

Strength Training

Strength training is part of the healthy exercise recommended for everyone to reduce health risks. When you are losing weight, it can help maintain and even build healthy muscle. Aim to include strength training workouts two days per week. Your short walking day or your day off from walking might be convenient times to work these into your schedule.

Weight Loss Workout Plan

You can use this example schedule and modify the days as needed. The time listed is at your target heart rate and pace, after warming up.

  • Sunday: Long Day with 60 minutes at brisk pace
  • Monday: Day Off with no walking for exercise, but you can enjoy easy strolls.
  • Tuesday: Short Day with 30 minutes brisk walking, plus a strength training workout
  • Wednesday: Short Day with 30 minutes of brisk walking
  • Thursday: Long Day with 60 minutes of brisk walking
  • Friday: Short Day with 30 minutes of brisk walking, plus a strength training workout.
  • Saturday: Long Easy Day with 30 minutes at your target heart rate, then 30 to 90 more minutes at an easy pace.

    Feeling Worn Out?

    If your walking workout leaves you feeling sore or worn out the next day, take a day off. If this happens each day that you walk, check your heart rate to be sure you are not overdoing it. Drop back to 50 percent or less of your target heart rate and cut back on the number of long days in preference for short days.

    A Word From Verywell

    Walking is a good cardio exercise that can be part of your weight loss efforts. You will also need to eat fewer calories than you burn each day, so it can help to track your food with a food diary or app or follow a structured diet plan. The amount of exercise recommended for weight loss fits well with what everyone needs to reduce their health risks.

    By adopting this schedule, you will be on the path to a healthier life at any weight.

    Sources:

    Getting started with physical activity for a healthy weight. CDC. https://www.cdc.gov/healthyweight/physical_activity/getting_started.html.

    Keeping It Off. CDC. https://www.cdc.gov/healthyweight/losing_weight/keepingitoff.html.

    Losing weight. American Heart Association. http://www.heart.org/HEARTORG/HealthyLiving/WeightManagement/LosingWeight/Losing-Weight_UCM_307904_Article.jsp#.WKD9bX-AmW4.  

    Physical Activity and Health: The Benefits of Physical Activity. CDC. https://www.cdc.gov/physicalactivity/basics/pa-health/index.htm#ControlWeight

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