Will Walking on a Treadmill Burn Belly Fat?

Last Updated on December 16, 2023 by Candi Randolph

So here’s the question: will walking on a treadmill burn belly fat? Well, yes and no. In this post, you’ll learn how a walking workout on a treadmill can help you keep your belly fat under control, in a healthy and realistic way.

You’ll see how to go through an interval walking workout as a woman over 50 and avoid injury. And, there’s a handy little guide for finding the best small treadmill for home use that will work for you!

will walking on a treadmill burn belly fat

So let’s get back to answering the question, “will walking on a treadmill burn belly fat?” We’ll deal with the ‘no’ side of the equation first and get the bad news out of the way.

Simply spending 20 or 30 minutes on a treadmill, walking at a leisurely pace, then hopping off for a big, juicy burger and fries will not only NOT help you lose belly fat, but you’ll also probably gain weight and increase the bulge in the middle section.

Why? Well, think about it. A moderately paced treadmill walk of 30 minutes will burn off about 140 calories for a woman 125 lb. woman. The calories in a burger and fries? Almost 1,000. Yikes. It might be an extreme example but you get the idea.

Here’s part 2 of the “no” side of the equation. It is not realistic to think that as women over 50 we can make belly fat go away with certain exercises, whether it’s a treadmill, a bunch of crunches, or any other targeted exercise. That alone will not do the trick.

But let’s move on to the second half of the equation, the question of whether a treadmill belly fat workout exists, or is effective?

Here’s the good news, my friends: Take those treadmill walking workouts and combine them with strength training PLUS healthy eating, and then yes, you can fight the battle of the belly bulge after 50!

By the way, if you click on a link and then make a purchase, I may earn a small commission at no additional cost to you. Thank you!

It can be difficult to remain motivated, encouraged, and feel supported when you’re trying to establish a healthy habits and lose weight. Did you know that your smart phone can be a very effective tool for accomplishing your goals to live a healthier life? Learn more about MIGHTY HEALTH, the healthy lifestyle app created for women and men over 50

Using a Treadmill to Lose Belly Fat the Right Way

how to use a treadmill to lose belly fat the right way

As women over 50 (and over 60, like me), we need to make our first step in a workout the one that gives us an ‘okay’ from our doctor to do any type of exercise that is new or different or may affect existing health issues. So, be sure to check with your physician first.

Please note that I am not a physician or a health professional, and these tips and suggestions are just that. Always make the decisions that are best for you and your individual needs or restrictions.

A more effective way to burn calories on the treadmill

If you’re going to use a treadmill at home, or at the gym, you want to make your exercise time count, right?

I remember when my husband and I were first married, he was really into working out, so I started going to a fitness center with him. I’d hop on the treadmill while he did a variety of strength training as well as running on the treadmill.

After a while, I realized (and he told me, too!) that my little walks weren’t really helping me all that much. I wasn’t putting enough effort into the workout, nor was I adding in any other type of exercise. My bad.

I started to put more effort into my treadmill walks, including a steeper incline and quicker speed. I added a stair-stepper and strength training to my fitness center workouts. Much better.

Our friends at VeryWellFit.com have some wise advice for us to follow as we prepare for our treadmill walking workout. Here’s the quick version:

  • how to properly step onto the treadmill (hint: not when it’s moving)
  • avoid holding onto the handrail or console if at all possible
  • try not to look down or hunch your shoulders
  • avoid leaning forward
  • try not to take too big of a stride
  • learn how to take a proper walking step
  • use your arms
  • be sure you understand your treadmills features and functions
  • don’t go too fast

My thoughts to make your treadmill exercise count:

  • Make sure your treadmill is the best one for you. It doesn’t have to cost hundreds of dollars, either. You’ll find my Guide to Small Size Treadmills for Home Workouts below.
  • Start slowly if you’re not used to exercising
  • Make sure you have comfy and well-made walking shoes as well as socks that will stay put as you workout!
  • Make the commitment to yourself and stick with it
  • Hold some light hand weights or use wrist weights as you swing your arms for added intensity
  • Follow a treadmill workout routine to help you learn how to maximize the benefits. You’ll find a great example below!

An example of an interval walk on a treadmill

It’s important to build up some endurance with any type of exercise, and walking on a treadmill is no exception.

Here is a short interval walking routine from msn.com that you can use to burn calories, get your heart rate up and help reduce the belly fat.

Note that this workout does not include any running or jogging, so it’s easy on the knees. You will use the incline on the treadmill as you progress through the workout.

Keep these important walking tips in mind:

  • don’t look down at your feet
  • engage your abs – it will help keep your back straight
  • keep a natural swing to your arms and only hold onto the handrails if you have to. Bottom line? Be safe, but if you can, let go of the handrails and walk naturally.

Beginner Treadmill Plan – 34 minutes including warm-up and cool down

Warm-up: 5 minutes at a 0 percent incline walking at a 3.0 speed. Your heart rate should be between 120-130 BPM.

First Interval: 5 minutes at a 2-3 percent incline at a 3.5 speed. Your heart rate should be between 130-140 BPM.

Rest/Recovery: 2 minutes at 0 percent incline walking at a 3.0 speed. Your heart rate should drop to 125-135 BPM.

Second Interval: 10 minutes at 2-3 percent incline at a 3.5-3.8 speed. Your heart rate should be between 140-150 BPM.

Rest/Recovery: 2 minutes at 0 percent incline walking at a 3.0 speed. Your heart rate should drop to 125-135

Third Interval: 5 minutes at 2-3 percent incline at a 3.5 speed. Your heart rate should be between 130-140 BPM.

Cool Down: 5 minutes at 0 percent incline walking at a 3.0 speed. Your heart rate should return to 120-130 BPM.

Add HIIT to your treadmill workout

If you are able to add some short spurts of high-intensity interval training (HIIT) to your workout, the increased oxygen demands on your body during this period will increase the calories used.

For example, if you can run or jog for 30 seconds to 1 minute, then walk for 1 to 3 minutes, try repeating that cycle until you’ve spent a total of 30 minutes on your walking workout.

The time spent might have to be adjusted as you are getting used to the higher intensity, but the results can be worth it. Just make sure you’re healthy and able to do this type of exercise.

Consider LISS Cardio

I know what you’re probably thinking: what in the world is LISS cardio? LISS stands for “low intensity steady state” and in a nutshell, means that by doing aerobic exercise at a moderate level of intensity for a long enough period of time, you can see positive results without using high intensity.

Learn more about LISS Cardio.

Always include these essential components for reducing belly fat after 50

If you’re really serious about answering our question, “will walking on a treadmill burn belly fat?”, you’ll want to consider these elements of a healthy lifestyle after 50.

1 | If your goal is to lose weight (and hopefully target the belly bulge), remember that you’ll need to burn about 3,500 calories to lose 1 pound of body fat.

Here’s an example: If your weight is around 155 pounds, you’ll burn up about 167 calories by walking 4 mph for 30 minutes. If you increase the intensity of your walking workout as described above, you can raise the number of calories burned.

2 | As women over 50 and over 60, it is essential that we remember the “BIG 3” when it comes to exercising:

If you are physically able, girlfriend, this trio should always, always be part of your daily healthy lifestyle. Not only will it help keep the belly fat under control, you’ll also be doing good things for your metabolism.

3 | How to use a treadmill with knee pain

If you suffer from knee pain or find that walking on a treadmill causes some knee pain, here is a simple, quick and helpful tip for you…take a look:

A Guide to Small Size Treadmills for home workouts

Small size treadmills can be perfect for home use. They don’t take up a lot of space and many times they can be folded and stored. As a woman who lives alone and does pretty much everything by herself, the size, weight, movability, and storage capabilities are deal-breakers.

If you’re in the market for something with more size and girth, that’s cool. You might start here and see what features appeal to you.


  • Each unit in this little guide has an Amazon review rating of at least 4 stars as of the original publish date of this post
  • The cost of the treadmill before tax and/or add-ons is less than $600 as of the original publish date of this post
  • Assembly is almost always offered, so look in the area of the price options for this if you’re interested. For these units, it’s probably going to range from about $80 to $100


Goplus Compact Folding Treadmill for Home


  • The size: 46″L x 20″W x 43″H.
  • The foldability and storage options: folded size is 9″H x 23″W x 51″L. It can fit under many beds. Reviewers commented on the easy of folding.
  • Low Noise feature
  • Reviewers comment on the easy assembly
  • Budget-friendly: less than $300


  • It is a smaller sized treadmill so pay attention to the dimensions and think about who will be using it
  • Reviewers noted it is probably best for walking, not jogging or running.
  • There are no handles or sidebars on this treadmill other than the at the front, near the display
  • There is a built-in incline that does not adjust

Learn more about the Goplus Compact Folding Treadmill

Sunny Health & Fitness Walking Treadmill


  • Extensive handrails offer additional stability when needed
  • Easy to use with a user-friendly console
  • 44 x 19 walking deck
  • Shock absorption technology to help reduce joint impact
  • Wheels for portability
  • Reviews mention the stability and ease of use for those who need it


  • Size is on a smaller scale with dimensions of 58 x 29 x 53
  • This treadmill does not fold up; it is on wheels
  • No incline options

Learn more about the Sunny Health & Fitness Walking Treadmill

MaxKare Folding Treadmill


  • Reviewers mention how quiet it is when running
  • 3 manual adjustable inclines
  • Reviewers comment on the bright LED screen that is easy to read
  • 15 preset programs + cup holder on both sides
  • 17-inch wide multi-layer tread belt
  • Foldable and moveable, size when open is 53 x 26 x 46


  • Treadmill is designed for people between 4’6″ and 6’2″ with maximum weight less than 220 pounds

Learn more about the MaxKare Folding Treadmill

SereneLife Smart Electric Folding Treadmill


  • It is compact and folds for ease of storage
  • 3 levels of incline
  • Connects with the ‘FitShow’ app via bluetooth
  • Dimensions are 50″L x 24″W x 49″H when upright
  • Lightweight – 60 pounds
  • Majority of reviewers mention ease of assembly
  • Budget friendly price


  • Incline adjustments are manual

Learn more about the SereneLife Folding Treadmill

Horizon T101 Go Series Treadmill


  • “Featherlight” folding frame for ease of raising and lowering deck
  • Quiet operation per reviewers
  • Space-saving design with fold-up option
  • 10 speed keys and 10 incline keys
  • Bluetooth connectivity
  • Built-in device holder and USB port
  • 20 x 55 running/walking surface


  • Size is larger than others at 73″L x 30″W x 12″H

Learn more about the Horizon Fitness Treadmill

How about it, my friend? Will walking on a treadmill burn belly fat for you? Hopefully, you’ve come to a wise conclusion about the answer to that question, and know that it takes more than steps to beat the belly bulge.

Make it a goal to include regular walking workouts as a part of your overall exercise routine. With all of the treadmill options available plus the big, beautiful world we live in to enjoy, we can all benefit from this easy and affordable exercise.

And, we’ll increase the positive results (like taming the belly fat) as women over 50 when we combine it with a healthy dose of strength training plus healthy eating and nutrition.

Now if you’ll excuse me, it’s time for my walk! 🚶‍♀️ 💗

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will walking on a treadmill burn belly fat?

2 thoughts on “Will Walking on a Treadmill Burn Belly Fat?”

    1. Hi Beth, I’m not an expert on swimming for exercise, but I do know that it’s great for overall toning. So it would make sense that with continued swimming for exercise you could see some improvement in the belly fat.

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