Walking is a weight-bearing exercise that helps maintain bone density and is easy on joints. Walking at a brisk cadence is considered an activity of moderate intensity. Doing most days of the week for 30 minutes or more meets the health advantages of physical activity recommended by The American College of Sports Medicine and the American Heart Association.
Walking 5 miles a day is achievable, and people who only do low-intensity exercises find it rewarding, especially when taken consistently. Most importantly, if you can walk 5 to 6 days a week, 5 miles a day is great for your cardio health and improving your fitness level.
Normally, A healthy person takes approximately 1 hour 15 minutes to 1 hour 40 minutes to walk 5 miles. If You walk at a Easy walk pace of 3 mph, you can cover 5 miles in 1 hour and 40 minutes. If you increase your speed, you can cover the distance in less time! At a Moderate pace of 4 mph, you’ll take 1 hour 15 minutes to complete 5 miles.
The walking time may vary based on various factors, including your walking speed, age, gender, fitness level, terrain, and path.
How Long are 5 Miles? 5 miles is equivalent to 26400 feet and approximately 8.05 km. Therefore, you can actually use the distance to practice for charity walks such as 5K, while it prepares you for longer 10K walks.
How Long Does It Take to Walk 5 Miles?
Some people are professional or avid walkers and walk at a consistently brisk pace of 5 mph. In this case, it takes them only 1 hour to complete 5 miles. Others may opt for a slower but consistent pace of 4 mph, which is still relatively fast, and complete 5 miles in 1 hour and 15 minutes. Let’s look at the time taken for the different walking speeds:
|Slow Walk (2.5 Mph)/ 60 to 79 steps per minute/ 24 minutes per mile||2 hrs|
|Easy Walk (3 Mph)/ 80 to 99 steps per minute / 20 minutes per mile||1 hrs 40 min|
|Moderate Walk (4 Mph)/ 100 to 119 steps per minute / 15 minutes per mile||1 hr 15 min|
|Fast Walk (5 Mph)/ 120+ steps per minute/ 12 minutes per mile||1 hr|
Related: How Many Calories Are Burned Walking 5 Miles & Weight Loss?
Also, note that factors other than your determination and set goals determine your pace. These include the terrain, treadmill versus outdoor walking, weather conditions, the nature of the terrain, age, gender, and even body height.
For example, you will walk faster on a flat terrain than a hilly terrain and at a consistent pace if you walk on the treadmill. Also, you will likely walk faster in calm and cool weather than in hot, rainy, or windy conditions.
5 Miles: Average Walking Times by Age and Gender
Generally, according to research, men walk faster than women, while middle-aged people walk fastest on average. Let’s look at contrasting examples:
|Age||Gender||Average speed (Mph)||How long does it take to walk 5 miles|
|20-29||Male||3.04||1 hr 39 min|
|Female||3.0||1 hr 40 min|
|30-39||Male||3.2||1 hr 34 min|
|Female||3.0||1 hr 40 min|
|40-49||Male||3.2||1 hr 34 min|
|Female||3.11||1 hr 36 min|
|50-59||Male||3.2||1 hr 34 min|
|Female||2.93||1 hr 42 min|
|60-69||Male||3.0||1 hr 40 min|
|Female||2.77||1 hr 48 min|
|70-79||Male||2.82||1 hr 46 min|
|Female||2.53||1 hr 59 min|
|80-89||Male||2.17||2 hrs 18 min|
|Female||2.1||2 hrs 23 min|
How Long Will 5 Miles Take on the Treadmill?
Amazingly, walking on the treadmill actually takes the same duration as walking outdoors at similar average paces. However, people under the same conditions walking on the treadmill find it faster than walking outdoors. This is due to minimal interruptions, regulated weather conditions, and a predetermined pace. Let’s see the pace and time on the treadmill:
|Walking Speed (mph)||Minutes per mile||Time for 5 miles of walking|
|3.0||20:00||1 hrs 40 min|
|3.1||19:21||1 hr 37 min|
|3.2||18:45||1 hr 34 min|
|3.3||18:10||1 hr 31 min|
|3.4||17:38||1 hr 28 min|
|3.5||17:08||1 hr 26 min|
|3.6||16:40||1 hr 23 min|
|3.7||16:12||1 hr 21 min|
|3.8||15:47||1 hr 19 min|
|3.9||15:23||1 hr 17 min|
|4.0||15:00||1 hr 15 min|
|4.1||14:38||1 hr 13 min|
|4.2||14:17||1 hr 11 min|
|4.3||13:57||1 hr 10 min|
|4.4||13:38||1 hr 08 min|
|4.5||13:20||1 hr 07 min|
How Many Steps Are in 5 Miles?
On average, approximately 10,000 steps are required to complete 5 miles. But the number of steps to walk 5 miles will depend on the pace, sex, and body height. Let’s look at a few examples:
|Average Pace||A man of 6 feet in height walking 3 miles per hour takes 10,844 steps to complete 5 miles. However, the same man will take fewer steps, at 9259, to complete the distance if they increase their pace to 4 miles per hour.|
|Sex||A man of 6 feet walking 3 miles per hour will take 10,844 steps to finish 5 miles. On the other hand, a woman of the same height and at the same pace will take 11,009 steps to complete 5 miles.|
|Body height||A man of 6 feet walking 3 miles per hour will take 10,844 steps to finish 5 miles. In contrast, a man of 5 feet walking 3 miles per hour will take 11,690 steps to finish 5 miles.|
Is Walking 5 Miles a Day Good?
Yes, walking 5 miles a day is good for your health. It is low-impact and good for people who are restricted to doing high-intensity exercises, and it is also an amazing start to high-intensity cardio exercises such as running. Below are other benefits you gain from walking 5 miles a day;
- Improved cardiovascular health: Walking 5 miles will help you burn calories and reduce cholesterol while keeping blood flowing in all your body parts. This reduces the risk of cardiovascular illnesses while helping manage them for those already with the conditions such as hypertension.
- Improves mental health: Walking will increase your endorphin release and improve your mood. Walking outdoors also gets you fresh air and diverts your mind from stress, which keeps your mental health in check.
- Burning calories: Walking 5 miles daily will burn calories, and you burn even more with faster walks on hills. The more calories you burn, the better your chances of losing weight and keeping fit as well.
- It keeps the muscles, bones, and joints healthy. Do you want to avoid the challenges that come with age, such as deteriorating bone and joint health? Walking is not only great for young or healthy people but also recommended for senile people to improve their physical health and also manage and prevent other old-age challenges such as dementia.
Side Effects of Walking 5 Miles a Day
While walking five miles is great, it can have side effects if not taken with care. One should prepare for the Walk by starting with shorter walks and adding strength training if possible to avoid these challenges. So, which side effects come with walking 5 miles a day?
- Feet blisters and sores: These come as a result of walking for too long after a sedentary lifestyle and also from wearing the wrong type of shoes during the Walk.
- Too much fatigue: If you just wake up to walk for over 1 hour without prior practice, you are prone to so much fatigue that you might have to forego other essential activities, such as daily tasks. Fatigue also results from walking 5 miles daily without getting rest days in between to recover and rejuvenate.
- Dehydration and hypoglycemia: Dehydration and hypoglycemia cause fatigue and headaches and, in extreme cases, could cause unconsciousness. They result from inadequate water and food intake before or during the walking session.
- Irritability and foul mood: Instead of having a walk that cools your mind and brings you joy, too much walking causes irritability and a foul mood.
How to Avoid Side Effects of Walking 5 Miles
Fortunately, you don’t have to go through the above challenges from walking, and they should not discourage you from your goal. Here are tips to consider as mitigation options;
- Start with shorter distances: If you haven’t been walking or exercising, start with shorter 15 to 20-minute distances to adapt your body to the new routine.
- Constantly take on a pace you can sustain: Just because a faster pace means completing the distance faster doesn’t mean the pace is good for you. As you start with shorter distances, you will identify the pace you can sustain longer without causing yourself injury. If you want more, you can increase the pace gradually to avoid side effects.
- Start with a warm-up exercise: Take 5 to 10 minutes to warm up before taking on 1 to 2 hours of walking. The warm-up stretches your muscles and prepares your body for prolonged exercise.
- Take a bottle of water and energy snacks with you. Always carry water with you, and you can refill it along the way whenever you can remain hydrated. You can also carry an energy bar with you to avoid hypoglycemia and fatigue along the way.
- Take rest days: Rest in between your walking days to ensure that you recover. When you start the 5 miles, you can take as much as two days’ rest to ensure you recover enough to take a walk again. During your rest days, you can try shorter forms of cardio to remain active.
- Identify appropriate walking shoes and outfits. Ensure you don’t wear tight clothing and shoes to prevent blisters and sores.
Walking 5 miles takes 1 to 2 hours, depending on your pace. While several factors determine your pace, you can work on it to ensure that you reap the best out of the five miles. It has both health and fitness benefits, including a healthy heart and weight loss.
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