If you plan to incorporate walking into your fitness routine, you’re probably wondering, how long does it take to walk 3 miles?
An average person takes 45-60 minutes to walk 3 miles. A walker with a brisk pace might need only 30-35 minutes to walk the same distance, but another with a slow walking speed may require more than one hour. Walking three miles on a treadmill at a moderate pace will take roughly the same time.
Curious to know more?
This article examines the variables involved in determining the time you’ll take to walk 3 miles.
By the end of it, you should also know why most fitness experts recommend walking the distance and a few things to do after the physical activity to revel in its fantastic perks.
Factors Affecting the Time It Takes to Walk 3 Miles
Here are the top elements impacting the time you’ll spend walking three miles:
The surface you’re walking on is among the main factors that will determine how long it will take to walk 3 miles.
For example, uphill walking requires more calorie expenditure and energy, meaning you’ll tire quickly and consume more time to cover three miles than walking on a flat surface.
In addition, walking 3 miles on loose terrains like gravel or sand causes your feet to slide, forcing you to move at a slower pace and take more time to reach 3 miles.
Here’s another aspect that affects the time you walk 3 miles.
If your physical fitness level is high, you boast more endurance, strength, and balance, allowing you to walk faster and cover three miles in about half an hour.
In contrast, a low fitness level renders you a slow pacer, so you’re likely to hit three miles in one hour or more.
Supposing you’re not a big fan of the great outdoors and fancy walking 3 miles indoors, hopping on your treadmill is the best course of action.
But before you install that treadmill belt, grasp all other factors that could affect your walking experience, such as incline.
Usually, an increase in the treadmill incline bumps up your heart rate, making the physical activity more laborious, and reducing your walking pace. This could be advantageous in the long run if you endeavor to boost your physical fitness as it helps your body burn calories.
A decrease in the incline speed on a treadmill is quite the reverse–it makes the walking exercise less challenging. Therefore, it’s easier than walking on flat terrain in the great outdoors, allowing you to walk faster and cover the three miles in less than one hour.
Typically, people’s walking speeds decline as they age. As per a 2020 study, an average person in their thirties has a walking pace of 2.8-3 miles per hour.
However, their walking speed reduces to 2.7 miles per hour in their early sixties and 2.1 miles per hour when they’re above 65.
This means a youth can complete a 3-mile walk in less than an hour, but an older adult past 60 is unlikely to achieve the same feat.
Advantages of Walking 3 Miles a Day
Before you even ask yourself, “how long does it take to walk 3 miles?” you’ll want to know if the physical activity is worth it in the first place. Well, rest assured knowing that it is rewarding, as it presents many perks, including:
- You’ll enjoy various health benefits, such as low blood pressure, improved cardiovascular fitness, stronger bones, increased muscle power and endurance, and reduced joint pain.
- Walking three miles increases your lifespan. A study done at the University of Leicester in 2022 indicated that brisk walking could bring down your biological age by an impressive 16 years by the time you hit 40.
- You’ll burn more calories, lose weight, achieve your desired level of physical fitness and be in good shape.
- Walking 3 miles boosts your mood, relieves stress, increases energy levels, and allows you to sleep better at night. Ultimately, it improves your mental health.
What To Do After Walking 3 Miles
Walking three miles or more daily or several days a week could do wonders for your mental and physical health. But it’s not enough–establish a post-walk recovery routine to ease your sore muscles, or help your hurting knee joints to heal.
So, what should you do after you walk three miles? Check out these helpful recommendations:
Water is an essential factor in your post-walk recovery process. The American Council on Exercise advises fitness enthusiasts to drink 16-24 ounces of water for each pound (0.45kg) of body weight they shed off after an exercise, preferably in the following hour.
Rehydrating after walking three miles replaces the body fluid lost through sweating during the exercise. In addition, it prevents muscle fatigue and improves coordination.
Stretch For A Few Minutes
Michele Stanten, renowned walking coach and ACE-certified group fitness instructor who authored Walk Off Weight, suggests simple stretches after a walk.
“Absolutely, definitely, positively stretch after your walks,” Stanten says.
Stretching for several minutes helps most people recover faster after walking 3 miles, regardless of age. It also takes their flexibility to the next level and minimizes their risk of injury.
Refill Your Glycogen Stores
It’s also advisable to eat healthy food after you walk 3 miles, whether at a brisk pace or average walking speed. This allows your muscle tissue to heal and your body to grow stronger as you await your next exercise.
Most people, including fitness experts, load up on lean protein-rich options like fish and chicken after one hour of brisk walking. Vegetables and carbohydrates are also recommended as they aid recovery and help replenish your energy stores.
How Long Does It Take to Walk 3 Miles?
As outlined, you can comfortably swing a 3-mile walk within 30-60 minutes, depending on your pace. This physical activity brings some amazing advantages, but you must consistently enjoy them.
Set new milestones to make your 3-mile walk a habit. Other hacks you could use to build consistency include recruiting a reliable partner, scheduling the exercise, and indulging in fun activities such as listening to music while at it.
Rewarding yourself after walking three miles daily also goes a long way in turning it into a routine.
Frequently Asked Questions
Is three miles a lot to walk?
Walking three miles an hour equates to moderate exercise. You should do it on the reg if weight loss is your ultimate goal, as it’s an efficient way to burn calories. It’s also an effective exercise for those hoping to kick their physical fitness up.
How long does it take to notice the benefits of a 3-mile daily walk?
You’ll feel an improvement in your fitness level after 3-4 days of walking three miles. After seven days, you might lose some weight, and your muscles may feel more toned.