Walking a Mile at a Full Incline Vs. Jogging Flat on the Treadmill
Walking one mile on a treadmill that is set to its maximum incline is a more rigorous exercise than jogging one mile on a flat treadmill. Walking uphill is so difficult that walking up a hill with a 15 percent incline burns 67 percent more calories than walking on a level surface, although walking uphill reduces speed and faster people burn more calories, according to “The Complete Guide to Walking for Health, Weight Loss, and Fitness.” The same principle applies to walking on ascending treadmills.
Running on flat surfaces takes more effort than walking on flat surfaces, but the difference between jogging and walking is considerably smaller. That’s because jogging is slow running. Runners can’t talk to each other because they’re too breathless to talk, while joggers can talk to each other, according to the college textbook “An Invitation to Health.” Calories, a measurement of energy, and speed can measure effort. The average 155-pound person exercising for one hour burns 704 calories running 6 mph, 563 calories running 5 mph, 493 calories jogging (less than 5 mph) and 281 calories walking 4 mph, according to Wisconsin’s Department of Health and Family Services.
Walking uphill requires more effort than walking on level surfaces. Trying harder causes your heart to beat faster and pump more oxygen to your muscles. When you increase the incline on a treadmill, you also burn more calories. A 150-pound person walking 2 mph for one hour burns 170 calories walking on a flat treadmill, 258 calories walking on a treadmill set to a 5 percent incline, 354 calories walking on a 10 percent incline and 448 calories walking on a 15 percent incline, according to the “Discovery Health” newsletter. A 15 percent incline is “full incline” on many treadmill machines.
Inclines vs. Jogging
A 150-pound person walking at a full incline for one hour will burn 448 calories walking 2 mph, 639 calories walking 3 mph and 830 calories walking 4 mph, according to the “Discovery Health” newsletter. This individual will burn 224 calories walking 2 mph for one mile, 213 calories walking 3 mph for one mile and 208 calories walking 4 mph for one mile. Jogging on flat treadmills burns fewer calories per mile. A 150-pound person who jogs 5 mph will burn 585 calories per hour or 117 calories per mile. A 150-pound person who runs 6 mph will burn 688 calories per hour or 115 calories per mile.
One pound equals 3,500 calories. A 150-pound person who walks one mile every day or 31 miles per month will burn 6,603 calories per month while walking 3 mph on a treadmill’s full incline. A 150-pound person jogging one mile 31 times will burn 3,627 calories while jogging 5 mph on a treadmill’s flat surface. The walker needs to exercise more intensely than the jogger.
- The Complete Guide to Walking for Health, Weight Loss, and Fitness; Mark Fenton
- An Invitation to Health; Dianne Hales
- State of Wisconsin Department of Health and Family Services: Calories Burned Per Hour
- Discovery Health: Activity Calorie Burn Rate
Jay Schwartz has had articles printed by the "Chicago Tribune," "USA Today" and many other publications since 1983. He's covered health, fitness, nutrition, business, real estate, government, features, sports and more. A Lafayette, Pa. college graduate, he's also written for several Fortune 500 corporate publications and produced business newsletters.