How Many Pounds Will You Lose Walking 3 Miles a Day?

Walking is a safe and effective way to burn calories.
i Stockbyte/Stockbyte/Getty Images

Hippocrates, the ancient Greek physician, said that "walking is a man's best medicine." If you're looking to lose weight in a low impact manner for your health, a walking routine may just be the prescription for you. Brisk walking three miles a day will yield weight loss at a safe rate if you also maintain a healthy diet.

Calorie Burn

How many calories you burn walking depends on how much you weigh. The more you weigh, the more energy it takes to move your body so you'll burn calories. If you weigh 120 pounds, for example, you'll burn 255 calories walking briskly for three miles. But if you weigh 180 pounds then you can expect to burn 345 calories and if you weigh 220 pounds you'll burn 415 calories. The speed at which you walk does not have a significant effect on how many calories you burn when walking, as long as you cover the same distance, according to the Harvard Medical School. If you want to increase your calorie burn, however, the Harvard Medical School reports that walking up stairs can burn two to three times as many calories as walking on level ground.

Weight Loss

A single pound of fat is lost when a person burns 3,500 excess calories whether through a moderate pace walk or regular exercise at a gym. A 120-pound individual will burn 1,785 calories per week by walking three miles a day, this is not impacted by walking speed; this amounts to a weight loss of about half a pound per week. A 180-pound person will burn 2,415 calories in a week, which amounts to weekly weight loss of about 0.7 pounds. A 220-pound person will burn 2,905 weekly calories. This works out to weight loss of 0.8 pounds per week.

Diet Considerations

You'll only lose weight from walking if you maintain the same healthy diet or cut back your number of calories. If you increase your calorie intake then you can't expect to see the same results or achieve weight loss goals. The McKinley Health Center recommends creating a daily calorie deficit of 500 to 1,000 calories a day for safe body weight loss in the range of 1 to 2 pounds per week. You can create this deficit from physical activity and dietary changes being implemented into your daily routine. For instance, a 220-pound person who walks three miles per day would need to make a weight loss plan and cut an additional 85 calories from his daily diet to create a 500-calorie deficit.


Before attempting to lose weight, talk to your health care practitioner to see if your exercise and diet plan fits your specific needs and determine what activity level and form of exercise is right for you. The Harvard Medical School recommends wearing brightly colored clothing when walking outdoors. It also advises people to walk facing cars if there is no sidewalk. During hot summer days you can stay cool by staying indoors; head to the mall or another air-conditioned location for your daily walks. Also ensure comfortable and well fitting walking shoes are worn and an appropriate walking pace is chosen, beginners may need to start with a regular walking pace before gradually increasing to a brisk pace. Working up to multiple mile walks may also be required, take overall health into consideration when making fitness goals and prioritize daily steps and progress towards a healthy lifestyle over weight goals.

Health benefits of walking can include both increase in fitness level, loss of body fat, mental health relief, and more.Consulting a personal trainer to discuss healthy weight loss strategies and various exercise options such as aerobic exercises,cardio, strength training, HIIT, or a daily walking program.

the nest