Skip to content

The Best Walking Techniques To Burn Calories & Maximize Results

Walking, when done right, can be your gateway to a fitter, healthier you.
FACT CHECKED BY Alexa Mellardo

Walking, a simple and accessible form of exercise, can be transformed into a highly effective workout with the right technique. When applied to park strolls or street power walks, there are certain walking techniques that can burn calories and maximize your fitness results. Say goodbye to treadmill dread; walking, when done right, can be your gateway to a fitter, healthier you, with no gym membership or fancy equipment required.

Walking is a versatile full-body workout that engages multiple muscle groups, boosts cardiovascular health, and aids in weight loss. Its low-impact nature makes it a fantastic option for people of all fitness levels. So, lace up your sneakers, and let's embark on a journey to better health through walking.

In this article, I'll discuss the best walking techniques for burning calories, the importance of posture and form, and how to incorporate intervals and inclines to keep your walks interesting. Get ready to elevate your walking game and stride toward success!

Perfect your posture and form for maximum calorie burn.

mature man walking outdoors, concept of fitness tips to prevent bone loss

1. Stand tall and engage your core.

Maintaining proper posture is one of the most critical aspects of walking for fitness. Stand tall with your shoulders back and down, chest lifted, and gaze forward.

Engaging your core muscles helps stabilize your spine and ensures you work your abs as you walk. A strong core improves your balance and efficiency, allowing you to walk faster and longer without discomfort.

10 Ways To Maximize Your Walking Workout for Faster Weight Loss

2. Swing your arms.

Arm movement plays a significant role in walking efficiency and calorie burn. Bend your elbows at a 90-degree angle and swing your arms naturally as you walk. This motion helps propel you forward, increases your pace, and engages your upper body muscles.

Keep your movements controlled, ensuring your hands don't cross the centerline of your body. The faster you swing your arms, the faster your legs will follow, helping you burn more calories.

3. Take longer strides.

Focus on taking longer, more powerful strides to maximize your calorie burn. Push off with your back foot and extend your stride with your front leg. Keeping the intent of powerful strides engages more muscles in your legs and glutes, increasing the intensity of your walk. Be mindful not to overextend, which can lead to strain or injury. Aim for a natural, fluid stride that feels powerful but comfortable.

How To Do Interval Walking for Weight Loss

Incorporate intervals and inclines for a calorie-blasting walk.

woman doing uphill walking workout to shrink belly fat faster

1. Mix up your pace.

One of the best ways to increase the effectiveness of your walking workout is to incorporate intervals. This method, also known as interval training, keeps your body guessing and boosts your metabolism, leading to more calories burned during and after your workout.

Alternate between brisk walking and a more moderate pace. For example, walk quickly for one minute, then slow down for two minutes.

2. Add hills or stairs.

Walking on an incline is a fantastic way to intensify your workout. Hills and stairs force your muscles to work harder, particularly your glutes, hamstrings, and calves. The added resistance helps burn more calories and builds strength and endurance in your lower body.

If you're on a treadmill, increase the incline periodically. If you're outside, seek out hilly terrain or a staircase.

Here's How Long You Need To Walk Every Day for Weight Loss

3. Speed walk with purpose.

Speed walking is an effective technique for increasing your heart rate and calorie burn without running. Focus on quick, short steps rather than long strides to speed walk. Maintain a brisk pace that makes it challenging to hold a conversation.

Track your progress and stay motivated.

woman checking fitness tracker on beach at sunset

1. Use a fitness tracker.

A fitness tracker can be a game-changer in your walking routine, as it helps you stay motivated and set achievable goals. Devices like Fitbit, Garmin, or even smartphone apps can track your steps, distance, and calories burned.

Aim for at least 10,000 steps daily, or gradually increase your daily step count to keep challenging yourself.

5 Best Interval Walking Workouts to Sculpt a Lean Body

2. Set realistic goals.

Setting realistic goals is the cornerstone of maintaining motivation. Start with small, achievable goals, such as walking for 30 minutes daily, two to three days a week. As you progress, increase your walk's duration, intensity, and frequency.

Celebrate your milestones, whether it's reaching a certain number of steps, losing weight, or simply feeling more energetic. Remember, every step counts toward your journey to better health.

3. Make it enjoyable.

Walking should be enjoyable, not a chore. Listen to your favorite music, podcasts, or audiobooks to make the time fly by. Walking with a friend or joining a walking group can also make the activity more social and fun. Changing your route and exploring new areas can keep your walks interesting and prevent boredom.

Jarrod Nobbe, MA, CSCS
Jarrod Nobbe is a USAW National Coach, Sports Performance Coach, Personal Trainer, and writer, and has been involved in health and fitness for the past 12 years. Read more about Jarrod
Filed Under