Hiking for weight loss is achievable on a regular day-hike with a calorie controlled diet and gives a combination of mental and physical benefits.

Hiking for Weight Loss

Here are six of the reasons why hiking can help to boost weight loss and blast calories:


Hiking can benefit with an increase in caloric burn, which isn’t the most essential aspect of exercise, but is certain to help in the process of reaching a target weight loss goal.

A difficult, uphill hiking trail is must more efficient at burning calories compared to taking an urban walk close to home.

Hiking up the elevated paths that increases the breathing and heart rate is similar in relation to caloric burn compared to a run at a moderate pace.

Easy accessibility

An easy, moderate, or difficult hike can take place anywhere that has suitable and preferably elevated terrain. Most states have plenty of hills or dedicated hiking trails for the beginner to start with.

Even if it isn’t possible to venture outside, a treadmill with a high incline can give a similar outcome to hiking up the steep hill or mountain.

Mental push forward

It is much easier to push forward mentally while out on the hiking trails compared to running. If running doesn’t excite, hiking for weight loss is certain to be a great alternative option.

Plus, for those wishing to progress to running, walking or hiking can provide a great entry exercise which has the ability to up the leg strength and cardiovascular fitness.

Social activity

Hiking is an adventurous and social activity and a great getaway for those living in a built up area.

Hiking a scenic or mountain trail gives the opportunity to push or challenge the body while benefiting from the fresh air.

Plus, exploring the newly visited areas has the added benefit of providing built-in motivation to reach the top and view the beautiful surroundings.

Total body workout

Even though the lower body benefits most from hiking, the upper body and arms can still get an active workout with the help of hiking poles.

Use the hiking poles to push up the inclined trails which make progress on the difficult trails safer and more efficient

A strong core means the body is more stable and in control when hiking over the difficult and rough terrain.

Muscles in the lower body (calves, thighs, and glutes) and certain to become stronger and will experience a noticeable burn by the time the hike is complete. The difficulty and elevated terrain of a hiking path will make the lower body more muscular, toned, and stronger compared to a regular urban walk.

Plus, this is a more difficult cardiovascular activity, which can benefit the heart and lungs.

Add extra gear

Hiking with a fully-loaded day-pack or backpack will make it harder to walk the trails and increase the ability to burn calories.

A 150-lb hiker with a pack weighing up to 40-lbs has the potential to burn an extra 85 calories per hour compared to those hikers with no noticeable extra load.

Plus, use trekking poles is a practical option for those hiking for weight loss and want to give the upper body an extra boost.

Even though the hiking poles mean more equipment to carry, this doesn’t mean the actual activity of hiking is any more difficult.