Is 10,000 steps a day enough to lose weight?
If you, like us, have resorted to cutting laps of the kitchen table to meet your daily 10k step count (cheers, iso!) listen here. You’re probably going about it all wrong.
Sure, studies have found that walking reduces your risk of developing illnesses such as type 2 diabetes, cardiovascular disease, dementia and some cancers. And yes, pounding the pavement for just ten-minutes per day has been proven to lower your risk of early death by 15 per cent.
But according to experts, it’s the quality of your steps not necessarily the quantity that counts.
Reason being? This increases your heart rate, which is when you begin to torch calories.
Image source: Getty
“When your heart rate reaches upwards of 100-120 bpm, age-dependent, [or roughly 60-70 per cent of your maximum heart rate; 220 - your age], you enter what’s known as the fat-burning zone, where fat is used as your primary energy source,” Laidler explains.
To break it down, walking at a pace of 3mph (or 20 minutes per 1.6km) burns upwards of three calories per minute (so 80 calories for a 30-minute walk.) But if you quicken your pace juuuuuust a little (think 5mph or 12 minutes per 1.6km,) you’ll more than double your energy expenditure to burn 180 calories for that same 30-minute walk.
It’s worth remembering, however, that this number is just an estimate. We all burn calories at different rates due to a number of factors (age! Metabolism! Muscle strength! etc.) But if Laidler’s advice is anything to go by, we'll no longer be pounding the pavement for hours on end before we see results.
*Puts FitBit on charge.*
Which weight loss methods have you tried before?