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How To Burn 2000 Calories A Day: Is Such A Feat Possible?

The question of ‘how to burn 2,000 calories a day’ is one that some people in the fitness community or someone who is new to fitness may be wondering about. When it comes to weight loss, weight gain, or just maintenance, calories play a much bigger role than some people give them credit for. 

Has the question of ‘how to burn 2,000 calories in a day for faster weight loss’ been on your mind for a while now? If so, then keep reading to find out how to burn 2,000 calories in a day, how to go on a calorie deficit to lose weight, how many squats a day to burn 2,000 calories in a day, and much more.

Is it Possible to Burn 2,000 Calories in a Day?

Yes, it’s absolutely possible to burn 2,000 calories a day. While most people assume that calories are only burned through exercise, the truth is that the body never actually stops burning calories – not even while you’re asleep.

You burn calories in a number of ways. This can be through:

  • Resting metabolic rate (RMR)
  • Thermic effect of food (TEF)
  • Physical and non-exercise physical activity (EAT/NEAT)

Your resting metabolic rate is the amount of energy you need (aka the number of calories you burn) to maintain basic bodily functions such as blinking, breathing, maintaining your heartbeat, circulating blood, and even yawning.

One study published in 2007 claimed that laughing for 10 to 15 minutes a day could increase total energy expenditure by 2 to 10 calories (9). This specific metabolic rate is determined by many factors such as age, gender, muscle-to-fat ratio, and weight and is said to account for 60% to 75% of the total number of calories you burn every day (10).

Thermic effect of food is the increase in metabolic rate following the ingestion of a meal. This is the energy the body uses to chew, digest, and absorb the nutrients received from the food. This accounts for approximately 10% of your daily calorie expenditure (8).

Exercise such as working out and non-exercise physical activity such as walking to work, typing, performing yard work, undertaking agricultural tasks, and fidgeting counts for 15% to 30% of your total daily energy expenditure.

All these activities together can be enough to help you burn up to 2,000 calories a day.

Lean and toned up body isn’t just a far-fetched fantasy. Check out the BetterMe app and watch it propel your weight loss journey into high gear!

Can I Lose Weight by Losing 2,000 Calories a Day?

Yes, you can. However, you don’t need to force yourself to burn 2,000 calories a day, especially not through exercise. Remember that you only need to create a calorie deficit of 500 to 1,000 calories a day to start losing weight.

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Losing 2,000 calories a day through exercise alone is a feat that can only be done by pro athletes. Not only do they work out for hours on end – something the average person cannot do without passing out – but their generous dietary needs allow them to do this and not burn everything out of their systems.

Articles that look at the eating habits of pro athletes and Olympic competitors show that some of them can eat up to 8,000 calories a day – something that allows them to fuel up for their intense games and activities (12, 14). They can easily burn 2,000 calories (and even more) in a day simply by working out to remain in tip-top shape. However, you cannot.

What Is the Average Calorie Per Day That a Person Can Burn?

As seen above, your body is always burning calories. However, the number of calories burned is dependent on several different factors. This means that while you may be leading the same life as someone else and performing the exact same activities, it is very likely that you’re not burning the same amount of calories.

So how do you determine the average amount of calories that an individual can burn in a day? According to experts, the best way to calculate this average is by using the Harris-Benedict Formula or Harris-Benedict equation. 

This formula was first created in 1918 but has since undergone fine-tuning to perfect it. The Harris-Benedict equation requires you to multiply your basal metabolic rate (BMR) by your average daily activity level (3).

To calculate your BMR

  • For men: 66 + (6.2 x weight in pounds) + (12.7 x height in inches) – (6.76 x age)
  • For women: 655.1 + (4.35 x weight in pounds) + (4.7 x height in inches) – (4.7 x age)

To calculate your daily activity level

Your activity level depends on a point system. The more active you are, the more points you get:

  • A sedentary lifestyle of little to no exercise = 1.2 points
  • A slightly active person who does some light exercises 1 to 3 times a week = 1.37 points
  • A moderately active person who does some moderate exercises 3 to 5 days a week = 1.55 points
  • A very active person who works out hard 6 to 7 days a week = 1.725 points
  • A person with a grueling workout routine or who has a physically demanding job = 1.9 points

how to burn 2000 calories a day  

To calculate the average calories per day burned by an individual

Now you understand the above two points, you’ll take the values from above and multiply them. For example:

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A 35-year-old, 6-foot-tall, and 180-pound man who is moderately active

66 + (6.2 x 180) + (12.7 x 72) – (6.76 x 35) x 1.55 =  2882.69 cals burned in a day

A 30-year-old, 5-foot 5-inches, and 150-pound man who leads a sedentary lifestyle

655.1 + (4.35 x150) + (4.7 x 5.146) – (4.7 x 30) x 1.2 = 1428.94 cals burned in a day

An important fact to note is that this equation tells you how many calories you burn in a day and is also useful for letting you know your intake of calories to maintain weight. 

Remember that the key to maintaining your weight lies in your ability to maintain a constant energy balance, i.e. food energy consumed should equal the energy burned through BMR and physical activity (10).

If you find these calculations to be too complicated and time-consuming, using a reputable and highly recommended app such as the BetterMe Calorie Tracker can make the process much easier.

How to Go on a Calorie Deficit to Lose Weight

As previously mentioned, your food energy intake matters just as much, if not more than your daily workouts in terms of weight loss. Going into a calorie deficit to lose weight is a surefire way to help you shed those extra pounds, even without considering going to the gym.

According to the Mayo Clinic, a deficit of 500 to 1,000 calories a day is enough to help you lose 1 to 2 pounds a week. As a beginner to cutting calories, you may be tempted to cut the highest amount possible. However, we recommend cutting just 500 calories a day as this is more manageable.

Going higher than this, particularly higher than 1,000 calories, can make your body go into starvation mode and can lead to issues such as hair loss, poor sleep, and lowered immunity. You can achieve a 500-calorie deficit to lose weight by using simple tricks such as:

  • Quitting alcohol or swapping out your favorite alcoholic drink for lower-calorie options. All alcohol contains empty calories and sugar, albeit in varying amounts. 

Remember: A high calorie intake and too much sugar in your diet increase your risk of obesity and chronic diseases such as type 2 diabetes and heart disease. Sugar has also been linked to enhanced impulsive behavior, stress, anxiety, depression, and even food addiction (2).

  • Drinking more water. Not only does water temporarily increase your metabolism by up to 30% (7), which makes your body burn more calories at rest, it is also a natural appetite suppressant that can keep you from overeating.
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A study published in 2014 confirmed that drinking excess water throughout the day suppresses your appetite and can also help lower body weight, BMI, and skinfold thickness (6).

  • Stop drinking your calories through energy drinks and sodas. Calories from liquids also count toward your total calorie intake, something that many people often forget. Cutting these from your diet can help you create a deficit.

It’s important to note that soft drinks and energy drinks are also usually very high in added sugar. As mentioned above, too much sugar is bad for your diet and weight, but also your general health. 

If you’re wondering how much sugar you should consume per day, the American Heart Association recommends that men should consume no more than 9 teaspoons, while women should not exceed 6 teaspoons of sugar a day (13). 

This can also be calculated as no more 36 grams or 150 calories and 25 grams or 100 calories, for men and women respectively.

  • Choose healthier snacks. According to the USDA database, one doughnut has 320 calories and one 227 g bag of plain unsalted chips has a whopping 1,220 kcal.

On the other hand, 1 cup of halved strawberries only contains 48.6 kcal, while 1 medium-sized bag of microwavable popcorn has 307 kcal. Both are packed with fiber. 

Make smart choices and you can very easily create a 500-calorie deficit without breaking the bank or starting a different diet altogether.

Read more: Kimchi: Calories, Nutrition, and Health Benefits

How Many Squats to Burn 2,000 Calories in a Day?

Squats are among the most popular exercises. While many of us think of them as the perfect exercise to get a rounder, perkier booty, they are more than just great butt exercises. When you squat, you’re working out more than just the muscles in your glutes. 

Squats are a type of calisthenics workout that exercises several large muscle groups and can help you lose weight faster. Not only do they target the muscles in your glutes, quads, and hamstrings, they go further and help improve your balance and mobility and increase your strength.

But how many squats do you need to do to burn 2,000 calories a day? 

As previously warned, trying to use exercise alone to burn 2,000 calories is not healthy for the average person or even the habitual gym goer. It can also be difficult to gauge how many squats you would need to do to achieve this as there isn’t really an answer to the issue of how many calories one squat burns.

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However, determining how many calories can be burned by squats in a predetermined amount of time is slightly easier to calculate. But even then, there is no ‘one size fits all’ answer to this as the exact number is determined by:

  1. Your body weight in kilograms
  2. The number of minutes you spend exercising
  3. The level of intensity of your squats workout session (metabolic equivalent value (MET)) – The higher your workout intensity/MET, the more calories you will burn.

For example, how many calories can a 78 kg person doing a round of HIIT squats burn in 5 minutes?

Step 1: Start by calculating calories burned per minute

0.0175 x 8(MET) x 78 (Kgs) = 10.92 cals per minute

Step 2: Multiply calories burned per minute by minutes spent exercising

10.92 x 5 = 54.6 cals in 5 minutes

Step 3: How much time will this person take to burn 2,000 calories in a day?

(2000 cals x 5 mins)/54.6 cals = 183.15 minutes

The above 78 kg person will need to perform approximately 3 hours of straight-up HIIT squats to burn 2,000 calories a day, a feat that is quite impossible for the average person, let alone a seasoned athlete.

how to burn 2000 calories a day  

How to Burn 2,000 Calories a Day at Home

Since the world switched to working from home and even hybrid work culture – and the fact that gyms can be expensive – home workouts have continued to gain popularity. It’s a relatively cheap and easy way to lose weight, maintain it, and even grow muscle for better health.

So what are some tricks on how to burn 2,000 calories a day?

Firstly, we would like to reiterate once more that burning 2,000 calories a day through exercise is not something the average person should try to do. Yes, working out can help you reach that 2,000 kcal mark, but it cannot be the only tool you use to accomplish this.

Generally, you can increase your calorie burn through exercise, but you can’t increase it to a 2,000-calorie burn safely, so we recommend aiming for a 500 to 1,000-calorie deficit each day using a combination of exercise and good nutrition. Some recommended workouts that could help you achieve this goal are jumping rope, swimming, Zumba dance classes, aerobics (including water aerobics), cycling, and HIIT. 

Remember to exercise at a high intensity or work out longer than usual. This is a surefire way to ensure that you burn a high number of calories during your workout session.

Looking for a way to break the vicious cycle of weight loss and tone up all the jiggly parts? Watch the extra pounds fly off and your muscles firm up with the BetterMe app!

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How Many Steps Do You Need to Burn 2,000 Calories?

Walking is another popular workout that many people, particularly people with weaker or painful joints and the elderly, prefer. Even younger people who are in good health love this form of workout as they get to enjoy the outdoors more.

But can walking help you burn 2,000 calories a day? How much energy do you expend walking a mile?

According to VeryWellFit, the calories burned walking a mile differs from person to person. Weight and walking speed play significant roles in this. The faster you walk, the more calories you burn and the heavier you are, the more calories you burn.

However, the rule of thumb states that a 180-pound person burns approximately 100 cals per mile while a 120-pound person will burn only 65 cals walking the same distance. With this in mind, how can you decipher how to burn 2,000 calories a day by walking? 

Verywellfit again shows that burning this much energy in a day by just walking can be quite impossible, even if you were to make an effort to walk up to 20,000 steps a day. To even get close to this number, you would need to walk at a very fast pace of over 4 miles per hour.

How to Burn 2000 Calories a Day by Running

If you’re a moderately active person who is looking at how to burn 2,000 calories a day, then running could help you create a good calorie burn, but probably not 2,000 calories. 

Depending on how much you weigh and your running speed, you can burn anywhere from 400 to 1,300 calories in an hour (4). Make sure you approach running for this purpose in a safe manner, such as training under the guidance of a personal trainer for a 10k or half marathon race. 

Read more: Intermittent Fasting Macros – Managing Calories the Smart Way!

how to burn 2000 calories a day  


  • How many calories is 1 pound?

According to the Mayo Clinic, 1 pound of fat is equal to approximately 3,500 calories (5).

  • What if I eat 2,000 calories a day and burn 500?

How this helps you with your goals is dependent on the calories needed to maintain your current weight. Use a calculator such as the Harris-Benedict Equation to find out how this affects your goals. 

  • Is burning 2,000 calories a day good?

Trying to burn 2,000 calories a day through exercise is not good. But burning 2,000 calories a day through RMR, TEF, and physical exercise, in addition to some non-exercise physical activity is good. It can keep you healthy and fit.

  • What is the laziest way to burn calories?

As explained above, you burn calories simply by sleeping, breathing, and blinking. However, if you want some low-energy activities to burn some extra calories, you could try:

  1. Drinking more water
  2. Laughing more
  3. Cleaning your dishes by hand or simply unloading the dishwasher
  4. Fidget more while seated
  5. Dance around as you go about your day
  6. Go for a walk
  • Is a one-meal-a-day diet good for weight loss?

Yes, it is. Also known as OMAD, the one-meal-a-day diet is a type of intermittent fasting that has a 23-hour fasting window and a 1-hour eating window to get all your calories in. 

Please note that while this diet can help with weight loss and reducing body fat percentage (1), following such an eating plan comes has some unfavorable risks.

Extended fasts can lead to difficulty in concentration, fatigue, weakness, and mood swings. Also, having just 1 hour to eat may lead to making bad food choices, binging, failing to meet recommended calorie goals, and even loss of muscle mass.

If you want to try intermittent fasting, you should opt for easier plans such as the 12:12, 14:10, or the incredibly popular 16:8.

  • How can you reset your metabolism to burn 2,000 calories a day?

As we’ve seen, when it comes to how to burn 2,000 calories a day, your resting metabolic rate plays a significant role. When your metabolism is slow, this means your RMR is slow and your body doesn’t burn as many calories while at rest.

Some things you can do to reset it include:

  1. Sleep more – at least 7 to 9 hours of uninterrupted sleep a night
  2. Move more – go on a walk or take the stairs instead of the elevator
  3. Increase your protein intake
  4. Drink more caffeine through tea and coffee
  5. Exercise more
  6. Build some muscle
  7. Drink more water

The Bottom Line: How to Burn 2,000 Calories a Day

When it comes to how to burn 2,000 calories a day, unless you’re a pro athlete or an Olympian, exercise alone will not cut it. Exercise and your metabolism while resting will need to work together to help you reach this goal.

If you were hoping to burn this much to lose weight, don’t feel disheartened. Eating at a calorie deficit of 500 to 1,000 calories a day and working out at a moderate pace for 30 minutes a day is enough to get you started.


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!


  1. A controlled trial of reduced meal frequency without caloric restriction in healthy, normal-weight, middle-aged adults (2009,
  2. A High-Sugar Diet Consumption, Metabolism and Health Impacts with a Focus on the Development of Substance Use Disorder: A Narrative Review (2022,
  3. Basal metabolic rate studies in humans: measurement and development of new equations (2005,
  4. Calories burned in 30 minutes for people of three different weights (, 2021)
  5. Counting calories: Get back to weight-loss basics (2023,
  6. Effect of excessive water intake on body weight, body mass index, body fat, and appetite of overweight female participants (2014,
  7. Effect of ‘Water Induced Thermogenesis’ on Body Weight, Body Mass Index and Body Composition of Overweight Subjects (2013,
  8. Energy Balance: Totaling Up Energy Expenditure (n.d.,
  9. Energy expenditure of genuine laughter (2007,
  10. Examining Variations of Resting Metabolic Rate of Adults: A Public Health Perspective (2014,
  11. Examining Variations of Resting Metabolic Rate of Adults: A Public Health Perspective (2015,
  12. How Many Calories Do Olympic Athletes Need? (2016,
  13. How much sugar is too much? (n.d.,
  14. Tokyo 2020: How many calories do Olympic athletes burn? (2021,


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