“I want to burn 1000 calories a day, is it possible?” You have read tons of articles, trying to get a straight “yes” or “no” answer to this question. At the risk of sounding like the rest, this is our answer – maybe. Why? Because weight loss is a pretty straightforward, yet often misinterpreted, game of numbers.
Theoretically, it is possible to burn 1000 calories a day. However, in reality, several factors may make it hard for you to do so. For that, we have nature to thank – your body is unique and there is no one-size-fits-all approach to calorie burning. That said, we have simplified the jargon for you to understand how to burn 1000 calories in a day.
The Science Behind Burning Calories Simplified
Before you rush to find the fastest ways to burn 1000 calories a day, understand how the process works. Once you have a clear picture of how your body burns calories, getting the fastest fat-burning regime is easy. First things first; why and how does your body burn calories?
Calorie burning is the conversion of macronutrients into energy for powering your body. There are three fat-burning outlets your body uses: metabolism, thermogenesis, and exercise. So, you might conclude that you can burn calories by working on one of the three outlets.
Well, the first two are pretty much out of your reach. Because they are internal bodily and self-regulatory functions. The third, however, is where you should concentrate if you are looking to burn calories.
Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR)
Metabolism refers to the chemical processes in your body that supply energy for basic and complex body functions. Breathing, cell repair, and blood circulation depend on energy from these processes. Even while you sleep, energy continues to be consumed at a rate known as the Basal Metabolic Rate (BMR). This rate is important for you to keep in mind; you will understand why shortly.
BMR accounts for 50-80% of calories burned each day (7). Your individual BMR is determined by several factors:
- Age – the older you get, the lower your BMR goes.
- Body size – the larger your body size, the higher your BMR.
- Gender – men tend to have a higher BMR.
- Genetics – everyone’s built differently.
So, Why Does Your BMR Matter If You Want to Burn 1000 Calories?
When it comes to weight loss, knowledge is power. Knowing how many calories your body burns every day will help you figure out whether you can afford to lose 1000 a day. It is a bad idea to spend all your body’s energy on exercise, leaving nothing for your bodily functions. Simply put a 2-hour treadmill workout might make you burn 1000 calories, only for you to potentially faint from exhaustion after.
Additionally, most customized workout plans take into account your BMR to create an effective weight loss strategy. Because everyone’s body is different, there is no one-size-fits-all way of burning 1000 calories. To know which one will work for you, calculate your BMR using a reliable tool.
Thermogenesis is not as popular an energy outlet as BMR; you might even be hearing about it for the first time. This word simply refers to the heat production of your body, which depends on the ambient temperature. Thermogenesis, therefore, helps regulate body temperature. However, this is only a tiny part of your energy metabolism. It accounts for a very small percentage of calorie consumption (5-10%) (7).
Finally, there is physical activity. It is the only calorie outlet that you have control over. It is the most variable factor that determines whether you burn 1000 calories a day, or not. Depending on the level of physical activity, one may burn up to 20% of calories (7).
Not all physical activity is exercise. Cleaning, moving from one place to another, and other simple daily tasks are energy outlets. Burning calories through such activities are called Non-Exercise Activity Thermogenesis (NEAT) (8). Exercise, on the other hand, is intentional and has the potential to burn many more calories.
Is It Possible And Healthy To Burn 1000 Calories A Day?
Yes, it could be possible to burn 1000 calories in a day. Many workout regimens could give this effect. However, it is most likely not an easy and healthy thing to do. You will have to exert yourself and do a combination of exercises to burn 1000 calories. If you are willing to take the risk, you can find some home, gym, and outdoor exercises that burn 1000 calories later on in this article.
Is it safe to exert yourself and burn so many calories every day? That depends on whether your body can keep up with such exercises. As usual, everything should be done in moderation. Furthermore, there are side effects to such strenuous exercise; we also discuss these further along in this article.
How Much Exercise Do You Have To Do To Burn 1000 Calories In A Day?
Every exercise you can think of burns a different number of calories. This number is further influenced by a person’s weight. Think of your body as a load; it takes more energy to move a heavy load than a light one. Therefore, someone weighing 125 pounds will burn fewer calories during 30 minutes of the activity in comparison to a 185-pound person.
To give you an idea of just how much exercise burns 1000 calories, see the list below. According to Harvard Health, this is the estimated number of calories burned by a 155-pound person while doing various exercises for 30 minutes (3).
- General weight lifting – 112
- Vigorous weight lifting – 223
- Water aerobics – 149
- Low impact aerobics (e.g walking) – 205
- High impact aerobics (e.g running) – 260
- Moderate stationary bicycling – 260
- Vigorous stationary bicycling – 391
- Moderate stationary rowing – 260
- Vigorous stationary rowing – 316
- Circuit training – 298
From the list above, you can see that burning 1000 calories a day will take an hour or more of the same exercise. You may opt for a combination of exercises to make your workout interesting. No idea which specific exercises to do? Read on for a compilation of home, outdoor, and gym exercises.
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How To Burn 1000 Calories A Day At Home?
Not everyone can make it to the gym every day. Whether you cannot afford a membership or are too busy at home, here is how to burn 1000 without leaving your house.
Jumping rope is one of the best cardio exercises. It not only tones your calves and tightens your core but also improves lung capacity. The American Heart Association specifically recommends such aerobic exercise for improving cardiovascular health (1). So, how many calories can you burn with a jump rope?
According to Harvard Health, someone weighing 155 pounds will burn 372 calories after 30 minutes of such exercise (3). To burn 1000 calories, you will spend about an hour and a half each day jumping rope. The time you take to achieve the target depends on your weight. If you weigh less than 155 pounds, you will spend more time and vice versa.
Do an hour and a half seem too long to spend on the same exercise? You can make jumping rope bearable by shifting your weight from one foot to the other. You may also take breaks, but bear in mind that the calorie-burning slows down during that time. Using foot weights is one way of intensifying the workout and improving calorie burning.
Don’t Jog, Run
Jogging at 4.5mph for 30mins burns 186 calories (3). Running at 6mph for 30 mins burns 372 calories (3). If you have the stamina for it; run. You will achieve more in less time. You will have to keep at it for an hour and a half to achieve 1000 calories burned. This is not a feat many can achieve. However, if you have an athletic background, this might be your preferred exercise. Be careful not to strain too much and injure your muscles; always listen to your body.
Get Your Dancing Shoes On For Zumba
Dancing is a fun way to burn calories. When you do a Zumba workout, you burn even more fat. Whereas slow dancing, waltzing, and foxtrots burn only 112 calories in 30mins, Zumba is much more promising (3). Depending on your weight, you can burn 500 calories in less than an hour. If you keep the intensity constant, you can hit your target in an hour.
Go Up Your Stairs Way More Than You Normally Would
Stair climbing seems like such an easy thing to do until you realize you are not doing it enough. Your stairs are readily available exercise equipment that can help you to burn an impressive number of calories each day. Climbing utilizes more muscles than walking and running. It also burns calories faster.
Climbing stairs at a fast speed burns 11 calories per minute while running up burns 19 calories (10). To burn 1000 calories, you can opt for a fast speed and spend an hour and a half. If you choose to run, you will shed at a faster rate and spend less than an hour at it.
You Don’t Have To Break A Sweat, Swim!
If you are unable to take part in high-impact exercises due to a physical condition, swimming is a great option. It gives a full-body workout and improves cardiovascular strength (9). More importantly, it burns a decent number of calories. Freestyle swimming can burn 180-266 calories in 30 minutes depending on your body size (3). Intense swimming should help you meet your fat-burning target in less than an hour.
How To Burn 1000 Calories A Day Walking Outdoors?
Depending on how fast you walk, you can burn up to 223 calories in 30 minutes (3). If done correctly, walking can help you hit your 1000 calorie target in a day. Here are some tips to get the most out of your daily walk.
Practice Interval Walking
Interval walking is adding short bouts of fast exercise to a regular walk. You can walk at a fast pace for a minute, slow down for 30 seconds and alternate back and forth. There are no rules when it comes to interval walking; you should always listen to your body. Instead of maintaining a steady pace throughout, keep testing your limits to increase the calories burned.
Use a Route That Has Stairs
Taking the stairs does not have to be a standalone exercise. Incorporate it into your daily walk to switch up your routine. Because climbing exercises a different set of muscles, you get a more intense workout.
Choose Hilly Terrains
Higher elevation demands more energy and translates into more fat burning. Taking a hike every once in a while will ramp up the resistance of the exercise and challenge your system. According to Harvard Health, hiking can burn up to 266 calories depending on your weight (3).
Use Your Arms
Swinging your arms turns your ordinary walk into a power walk. It makes the exercise more intense and helps burn more fat. If you can, swing your arms and reach over your head. You might huff and puff a little more while walking briskly, but it will be worth it.
Carrying weights makes your body work harder. This translates to more fat burning, especially if you maintain a brisk pace (13). You can choose a weighted vest, or carry a rucksack on your back. Be careful not to change your gait by carrying a heavy load. Your goal is to make your workout more intense without changing your center of gravity.
Switch up your daily walk by incorporating exercises. Jumping jacks are a go-to for most people walking outdoors. More exercises can be done while standing without equipment. Consider lunges and squats for extra fat burn.
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How To Burn 1000 Calories A Day On Treadmill?
Running for an hour continuously on the treadmill might help you reach your 1000-calorie target. However, you might get more worn out by the monotony of the exercise than anything else. Cue High Interval Intensity Training (HIIT). This is alternating high-speed treadmill workouts with lower recovery intervals.
HIIT ensures you spend less time on the treadmill while getting better results. A study published by PLOS ONE reveals that HIIT is capable of aiding faster weight loss and overall health (11). In another study published in the Sports Medicine Journal, obese teenagers had better cardiovascular fitness while undertaking HIIT in comparison to endurance training (4).
If science says it’s good for you, it certainly is. So, how does a HIIT treadmill workout look like? To achieve such a feat you must set the treadmill at an incline to increase the workout intensity. Below is a sample of a typical session that can burn up to 1000 calories in a day:
- 00-05 min: 3.5 speed, 4 incline
- 05-08 min: 3.8 speed, 9 incline
- 08-10min: 3.5 speed, 3.5 incline
- 10-13 min: 3.8 speed, 11 incline
- 13-15 min: 3.5 speed, 3.5 incline
- 15-18 min: 3.8 speed, 13 incline
- 18-20 min: 3.5 speed, 3.5 incline
- 20-23 min: 3.8 speed, 15 incline
- 23-25 min: 3.5 speed, 3.5 incline
- 25-28 min: 4 speed, 15 incline
- 28-30 min: 3.5 speed, 3.5 incline
- 30-33 min: 4 speed 15 incline
- 33-35 min: 3.5 speed, 3.5 incline
- 35-38 min: 4 speed, 15 incline
- 38-40 min: 3.5 speed, 3.5 incline
- 40-43 min: 4 speed, 15 incline
- 43-45 min:3.5 speed, 3.5 incline
- 45-48 min: 4 speed, 15 incline
- 48-50 min: 3.5 speed, 3.5 incline
- 50-53 min: 3.8 speed, 15 incline
- 53-55 min: 3.5 speed, 3.5 incline
- 55-60 min: 3.8 speed, 15 incline
- 60-65 min: 3.5 speed, 2 incline
Eat 2000 Calories A Day And Burn 1000: Here’s Why Weight Loss Is A Numbers Game
The most common misconception about weight loss is that it can happen only in the gym. The truth is that losing weight requires a concerted effort through improved eating habits and exercise. You have to understand the mathematics to get it right.
The number of calories you eat can affect your calorie-burning efforts. It is why, while exercising with a 1000 calorie target in mind, you must also watch what you eat. Cutting back on calorie consumption might reduce how much exercise you need to do to reach your target.
These four numbers of calories matter – how many you consume, how many are used by bodily processes, how many you cut through portion control and healthier food choices, and how many you burn through exercise (2). To lose weight, consume fewer calories than you can lose through a combination of daily activities, healthy diet, and exercise.
Is It Healthy And Safe To Burn 1000 Calories In A Day Through Exercise?
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends a minimum of 150 minutes of exercise per week (5). The CDC also states that going above this weekly minimum has numerous benefits for one’s health. From our assessment, burning 1000 calories in a day, requires at least 90 minutes of exercise each day, depending on body type.
People who weigh more should have an easier time reaching the target. However, people within average weight range might have to spend a lot of time and energy to do so. It is important to know one’s limits. Overextending your body through extreme exercise can cause injury.
It is not advisable to go from a sedentary lifestyle to targeting a 1000-calorie a day exercise regimen. With your current fitness level in mind, set attainable goals. It is okay to start with lower targets and build up to burning more calories every day. Progressing gradually while building endurance is the safest way to exercise.
Be careful to have accurate measurements of calories burned while exercising. Fine, so a fitness program guarantees that you will burn 1000 calories each session. Do not take their word for it – all bodies work differently. Use a fitness tracker to get better statistics while you exercise.
After an intense workout you think, “Hey, I have burned 1000 calories, I can have a beer and dessert.” When in reality, you have only burned 300 calories. This can severely impede your progress and frustrate your weight loss efforts.
Burning 1000 calories in a day could be possible. It could potentially be safe, provided you have considered your calorie needs and are taking the right measures to not impact your overall health. It is not an easy process. You will spend no less than an hour on intense exercises to achieve it. Depending on how much you weigh, you might have to push yourself too hard. The solution – create a calorie deficit through both diet and exercise.
This article is intended for general informational purposes only and does not address individual circumstances. It is not a substitute for professional advice or help and should not be relied on to make decisions of any kind. Any action you take upon the information presented in this article is strictly at your own risk and responsibility!
- American Heart Association Recommendations for Physical Activity in Adults and Kids (n.d, heart.org)
- Calculating how many calories are burned in a day (2020, medicalnewstoday.com)
- Calories burned in 30 minutes for people of three different weights (2018, Harvard.edu)
- Effectiveness of High-Intensity Interval Training (HIT) and Continuous Endurance Training for VO2max Improvements: A Systematic Review and Meta-Analysis of Controlled Trials (2015, springer.com)
- How much physical activity do adults need? (2020, cdc.gov)
- Is It Safe and Healthy to Burn 1,000 Calories a Day? (n.d, livestrong.com)
- Metabolism (2020, betterhealth.vic.gov.au)
- Metabolism and weight loss: How you burn calories (2020, mayoclinic.org)
- Physical and mental benefits of swimming (2018, medicalnewstoday.com)
- Take the Stairs to Stay Fit and Healthy (2020, verywellfit.com)
- Three Minutes of All-Out Intermittent Exercise per Week Increases Skeletal Muscle Oxidative Capacity and Improves Cardiometabolic Health (2014, plos.org)
- What Is Calories In vs. Calories Out? (2020, verywellfit.com)
- What to know about walking for weight loss (2019, medicalnewstoday.com)