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On a rainy day, if you live somewhere flat, or if you’re looking for a change of scenery, walking or running on the treadmill can deliver a solid workout — especially if you play with incline. Hill work on the treadmill allows you to strengthen different muscles and increase your heart rate to burn more calories, says Amanda Nurse, a run coach based in Brookline, Massachusetts. Calories: 268; Speed: 3.1 mph; Time: 30 minutes; Weight: 182 lbs; Incline: 6%; Calories: 305; As you can see the only thing that changed was the incline in 2 of the 30 minute workouts. Otherwise the calories burned went from 250 on the flat to 305 when the incline was 6%.The incline makes a big difference when you’re walking. Pumping up the incline on the treadmill not only tones your tush and legs, increases your endurance, and can help improve your speed, but also burns crazy calories.

Take a Positive Slant Love ’em or hate ’em, hills sure do burn calories—more than 400 in 35 minutes with Ryan’s Hit the Hills workout, which alternates between sprinting at no or low inclines, jogging at mid-range elevation, and walking steep hills. Burn more calories When walking at an incline, you burn more calories. A 150 lb person burns an additional 48 calories per mile when walking uphill at 3.5 mph. (That’s 68kg, 30 calories/km and 5.6 kph for our metric users!).

On the treadmill, though, you can tweak the incline setting to suit your needs. At a low treadmill incline setting of 2, for example, running for an hour at 6 mph expends about 60 more calories than on the flat. Amping it up to an incline of 5 boosts the difference in calorie burn to about 140 more calories than without an incline.

You can burn 500 calories on a treadmill in as little as 30 minutes or during the course of several hours, depending on how fast you run or walk. Your conditioning will determine how long it will take you to burn these calories, requiring you to walk at a slower pace to prevent fatigue, or letting you use several speeds and inclines to exercise. If you use the arm poles on an elliptical, then you burn more calories. A woman weighing 150 pounds burns around 300 calories while running on a treadmill at a speed of 10 mph in 30 minutes.

Running on an incline increases the total number of calories burned. I don’t have a lot of time to walk endlessly to just burn a few calories, and I get bored with more than 15 minutes, so I’ve started trying out different degrees of incline. Check out this calories-burned calculator (see treadmill listings on the far right).

Using an elliptical with arm poles burns more calories. The average 30-minute run on a treadmill for a 155-pound person going approximately at a 10-minute-mile pace burns about 223 calories. Running on an incline amps the calorie burn.

So does choosing an interval workout.

List of related literature:

It has been shown that walking at four miles per hour with hand weights burns the same number of calories as running at five miles per hour, with a 50 percent decrease in joint compression forces!

“Sculpting Her Body Perfect” by Brad Schoenfeld
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To put it into perspective, the average person can burn about 10 calories per minute during a moderate intensity aerobic activity, less if they work at a lower intensity.

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The manufacturers claim that compared to walking on a flat setting, exercising onan incline trainer burns three tofive times the number of calories.

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Changing the speed and incline of the treadmill alters the workload.

“Porth's Pathophysiology: Concepts of Altered Health States” by Sheila Grossman
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However, many Stairmaster users enjoy watching the “calories burned” meter while they work out (especially since those meters seem to give generous estimates of calories actually burned).

“The Behavioral Foundations of Public Policy” by Eldar Shafir
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by Eldar Shafir
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The more times you do the same distance, the easier it gets and the fewer calories you burn.

“Runner's World Complete Book of Running: Everything You Need to Run for Weight Loss, Fitness, and Competition” by Amby Burfoot
from Runner’s World Complete Book of Running: Everything You Need to Run for Weight Loss, Fitness, and Competition
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Typical exercise machines like stairs, rowing machines, and bikes that allow you to count calories can burn about 500 Calories each hour, depending on the activity.

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You can also ramp up your speed at the same time as you increase resistance/tension, which will burn even more calories.

“Escape Your Shape: How to Work Out Smarter, Not Harder” by Edward Jackowski
from Escape Your Shape: How to Work Out Smarter, Not Harder
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The combined exercises allow you to burn more calories per minute than you do with leg—only exercise, without raising the percep— tion of exertion.

“Fitness cycling” by Brian J. Sharkey, Steven E. Gaskill
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by Brian J. Sharkey, Steven E. Gaskill
Human Kinetics, 2013

And as your body becomes more efficient at running, that 195 calories you burn on the treadmill will decrease to about 125.

“You Are Your Own Gym: The Bible of Bodyweight Exercises for Men and Women” by Joshua Clark, Mark Lauren and, Clark Joshua, Lauren Mark
from You Are Your Own Gym: The Bible of Bodyweight Exercises for Men and Women
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ReadHowYouWant.com, Limited, 2010

Alexia Lewis RD

Registered Dietitian Nutritionist and Certified Heath Coach who believes life is better with science, humor, and beautiful, delicious, healthy food.

[email protected]

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24 comments

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  • I am 44 years old 291lbs at present. I have been walking on a incline for over 6 weeks now, for weight loss and to get fitter. I started off at 5% at 4kmph for 30 mins and have now worked my way up to 60mins at 10% and 4kmph.
    Today I mixed it up a little, doing intervals. 10% at 4kmph for 1 min and then 2 mins at 22% at 4.8kmph for 55 mins that was a killer for me lol

  • It really matters if you’re using the numberst that the machine is giving you as the total number of calories burned. If you’re holding on. That number that you think you burned is not true.

  • I’m 260 6”0 tall and I just started working out yesterday I put the incline on 15 and speed on 3.0 and every 10 minutes I go up 1 speed last 2 days I’ve been doing 40 mins I hold on though is that ok?

  • In short terms, aerobic exercises(walking) primarily use fat as energy, while anaerobic exercises(out of breathe) will focus on glycogen and short term energy sources and tend to spike cortisol, resulting in insulin spikes and fat storage.

  • It’s funny because I am probably one of the few people at my gym that does legit hands free walking on the 15% incline. Also I go for an entire hour. It’s actually crazy that it burns 900+ cals for me at my bodyweight. Best part IMO is that it is low impact. People are destroying their joints with long distance jogging when they can have 10x the fat loss and calorie burn overall incline walking.

  • Excellent tip! I’m a huge proponent of incline treadmill walking when done correctly. No holding on ever!! Best form of cardio in my opinion. Shred fat while being kind to your knees, hips, and back ����

  • The higher the intensity of cardio, the more carbs are burned. The lower the intensity of cardio, the more fat is burned. That’s it from now on I’ll just walk and save my legs from unnecessary injuries

  • Okay. I have watched this video and one other on walking being better for fat loss, and my 20 pound weight loss 3 years ago proves that out for me. I have hip troubles that made me stop moving altogether due to pain. Being T2D, and probably fitting into the obese category, I want to do something about it, so I have started walking indoors to walking videos. Now. In my quest to start moving more and LOSE FAT, I have eigh question: What, pray tell, is the difference between losing weight………… and losing FAT? And do you have suggestions on how to burn off/get rid of, visceral fat? BTW, I find these “talks” VERY informative and enjoy them much. Thank you for them. Have a blessed day.

  • At 47 and 275 pounds with not a lot of muscle and lung issues, I was in a bad way! I was on 3 inhalers and going up 3 steps made me winded, I started by walking, and only walking, 5 minutes at a time, and progressed every day. Sometimes I did great sometimes I didn’t, but i kept going. I cut out processed food and added sugar, kept walking my way to losing 60lbs. Started lifting while still walking every day and lost a total of 120lbs! I’m now running obstacle courses and mudruns, still lifting and still walking everyday. I’ve maintained the fat loss for over a year now> Just WALK WALK WALK

  • I’m a runner.. normal pace about 5.45 min/mile. However, developed what i thought was a stress fracture… backed off and started using tread… eventually i discovered that i could use the tread with an incline and slower speed to bring my effort back up without aggravating the apparent injury through high impact of actually running faster.

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  • Wife and I just walked 6 miles or about 14k steps yesterday and I did it in a pair of Prada loafers��. No joke, the wife was like “let’s take a walk”! Thought we’d be out for 10-15 mins but nope, a couple hours later and we’re still walking!

    Prob the longest I have ever walked but had some great conversation and was def sore when I first came home. Woke up this morning aft a great nights sleep and feel almost 100%.

    Agree that it’s a great form of exercise and more and more data indicating it’s probably as good as running if not better and less prone to injury. Def going to do more walking now.

  • I use it daily for 30 mins. Warm up for 5 on no incline. Then I do 1 minute walks on 3.5 speed increasing the incline after a minute. I start on 7 incline and go to 10 incline. Rest and repeat. I lost allot of weight. On weekends I jog outside.

  • I do 10 speed 10 incline. For a minute. And then I do 4 speed and about 3 incline walking for a minute. Repeat 5 times and then I feel like I’m going to pass OUT. But it feels good afterwards.

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  • I live in Old Town Prague. I am 56. I walk 2 hours per day, everyday. I work with my trainer 6 days a week. 12% body fat, chiseled. And my diet is not very good. I eat everything.

  • This isn’t the proper way, which is why he feels like he is going to throw up. You must allow you body to fully recover from the HIIT before you go back into it. His rest period is too short. ������!

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  • HIIT is a muscle sparring cardio? Seriously? Yeah no, it’s the opposite and it has huge recovery times. You probably even burned less than 250-300 at most. Also, research shows excess post oxygen consumption or after burn would only burn less than 15% of total workout which is not much. Do LISS and Weight Train if your goal is to lose fat this is very inefficient if your goal is to lose body fat

  • Walking works miracles. Have walked 10km on dry fasting and lost crazy amount of weight. Went from 120kg to 73kg now. Looking forward to building some muscle size and lose the remaining fat

  • When considering eating healthy, you have to never fall victim to modern day fad diets. Extreme diet plans are a risk for your health, especially ones that seriously limit your everyday nutritional intake. While they might induce fast weight loss, these kinds of diets will never be a long-term answer for your weight problem. It is best to search Custokebon Secrets on google as it is not just another fad diet where you starve yourself.

  • What are some ways to lost a lot of fat? I read a lot of superb opinions on the internet about how exactly Custokebon Secrets will help you lost lots of weight. Has any one tried using this popular fat burn methods?

  • When I started taking this, I was 220 pounds, but after taking this for one and a half months, I have lost over thirty pounds! Taking this Weight loss green store tea was a big part of my weight loss, but part of it was also watching the carbs and that I ate when I was taking this. It wasn’t hard, too, because Weight loss green store tea always made me feel full even before I started eating! I take a capsule before I eat and suddenly, not so hungry anymore! This is an A+ product and I hope that this helped other people lose weight.

  • Started doing This today instead of running for 1 hr, I did 9 incline and 14 speed I’m just used to the treadmill, it was very fun and I wanted to puke haha