Will I lose weight if I burn 1,000 calories a day?

Quick Answer

Yes, you can lose weight if you burn 1,000 calories more than you consume each day through diet and exercise. To lose 1 pound of fat per week, you need to maintain a daily calorie deficit of 500 calories. So burning an extra 1,000 calories per day while keeping your calorie intake the same would result in approximately 2 pounds of weight loss per week. However, it’s important to create a sustainable calorie deficit through a combination of decreased calorie intake and increased calorie burn from physical activity. Crash dieting and overtraining carry health risks and often lead to rebound weight gain over time.

How Many Calories Should I Burn to Lose Weight?

To lose weight, you need to burn more calories than you consume on a consistent basis. Here are some guidelines for healthy calorie deficits to lose weight safely:

  • 500 calorie deficit per day = 1 pound lost per week
  • 750 calorie deficit per day = 1.5 pounds lost per week
  • 1000 calorie deficit per day = 2 pounds lost per week

A calorie deficit of 500-1000 calories per day, created through a combination of diet and exercise, is considered a safe, sustainable rate of weight loss. Burning an extra 1000 calories per day through exercise while maintaining your regular calorie intake would create a 1000 calorie per day deficit and lead to an estimated 2 pounds of weight loss per week.

However, experts recommend not exceeding a daily deficit of 1000 calories through diet and exercise combined in order to preserve muscle mass and avoid nutritional deficiencies, fatigue, and other issues.

Ways to Burn 1000 Calories Per Day

Here are some examples of exercise and activities that can help you burn an extra 1000 calories per day:

Cardio Exercise

  • Running: 60-90 minutes per day (600-900 calories burned)
  • Swimming: 90-120 minutes per day (700-1000 calories burned)
  • Elliptical: 90-120 minutes per day (600-900 calories burned)
  • Jumping rope: 60-90 minutes per day (700-1000 calories burned)
  • Spin class: 60-90 minutes per day (600-900 calories burned)

Strength Training

  • Weight lifting: 90-120 minutes per day (300-500 calories burned)

Sports and Activities

  • Hiking: 120-180 minutes per day (600-800 calories burned)
  • Basketball: 60-90 minutes per day (500-750 calories burned)
  • Soccer: 60-90 minutes per day (600-800 calories burned)
  • Rock climbing: 60-90 minutes per day (400-700 calories burned)

As you can see, achieving a 1000 calorie per day burn through exercise alone requires 1-3 hours of vigorous activity depending on the type. Combining strength training and cardio can help maximize calorie burn. It’s best to include activities you enjoy so that you can sustain the routine long-term.

Is It Realistic to Burn 1000 Calories Daily?

Burning an extra 1000 calories every single day through exercise alone is very challenging for most people to sustain long-term. Here are some considerations:

  • It requires 90-180 minutes of exercise per day, which is a huge time commitment.
  • Such an intense exercise routine may increase risk of overtraining, injury or burnout over time.
  • Busy work and family schedules make it difficult to dedicate 1-3+ hours to working out daily.
  • Weather, travel, illness or other obligations will inevitably interfere with the routine at times.

A more sustainable approach is to aim for a 500-750 calorie per day deficit through a combination of diet and exercise. Here is an example:

  • Reduce calorie intake by 250-500 calories per day through nutrition.
  • Burn an extra 250-500 calories per day through moderate exercise like brisk walking, swimming, cycling etc.

This creates the 500-750 calorie daily deficit needed for healthy weight loss without requiring unrealistic amounts of exercise. Adjust your calorie target and exercise regimen based on your progress and lifestyle over time.

Health Risks of Extreme Calorie Deficits

Creating extremely high calorie deficits through diet and exercise can pose the following health risks:

  • Nutritional deficiencies: Severely restricting calories and food variety can lead to lack of nutrients like protein, vitamins and minerals.
  • Muscle loss: Aggressive calorie restriction and overtraining causes the body to break down muscle for energy.
  • Fatigue and weakness: Your body won’t function optimally without adequate energy and nutrients.
  • Starvation mode: Drastic calorie deficits can cause metabolic slowdown and make weight loss stall.
  • Binge eating: Extreme hunger from calorie restriction often leads to overeating and binge episodes.
  • Gallstones: Rapid weight loss increases gallstone risk.
  • Electrolyte imbalances: Low energy intake can deplete important electrolytes like sodium, potassium and magnesium.

Aim to lose no more than 1-2 pounds per week through a moderate calorie deficit to avoid these issues.

How to Create a 1000 Calorie Deficit

Here are some safe, sustainable tips to create a 1000 calorie per day deficit to lose weight at a rate of around 2 pounds per week:

Reduce Calorie Intake

  • Cut out empty calorie foods like soda, sugary snacks and refined carbs.
  • Portion control your meals and eat slowly until satisfied, not overly full.
  • Fill up on non-starchy veggies and protein which are satiating in smaller portions.
  • Avoid excessive fat intake from sources like creamy sauces, oils and fried foods.

This can create a calorie deficit of 500-750 calories per day through dietary changes alone.

Increase Physical Activity

  • Aim for 150-300 minutes of moderate exercise per week like brisk walking.
  • Add in strength training 2-3x per week to build muscle and burn extra calories.
  • Take the stairs, park further away, walk during breaks, etc. to increase daily movement.
  • Develop an exercise routine you enjoy and can stick to consistently.

This can create an added 250-500 calorie per day deficit through exercise.

Make Other Lifestyle Changes

  • Reduce stress through yoga, meditation or other relaxation practices.
  • Get 7-9 hours of sleep per night.
  • Drink plenty of water.
  • Monitor your progress and adjust your routine as needed.

Healthy behaviors like managing stress and getting enough sleep can optimize your metabolism and weight loss ability.

Sample Diet and Exercise Routine

Here is a sample diet and exercise routine to create a sustainable 1000 calorie deficit for healthy weight loss:


  • 1400-1600 calories per day
  • High protein (100-150g per day)
  • Moderate complex carbs (150-200g per day)
  • Healthy fats (50-70g per day)
  • Fiber (25-35g per day)
  • Water intake of 2-3 liters per day


  • 45-60 minutes cardio 5 days per week
  • 30-45 minutes strength training 3 days per week
  • 10,000 steps per day

This would create an estimated 500-750 calorie deficit from diet and 250-500 calorie deficit from exercise for a total daily deficit of 1000 calories. Adjust the numbers based on your individual needs and rate of progress.

Other Tips for Losing Weight

Here are some other important tips for safe, effective weight loss:

  • Eat plenty of vegetables, fruits, lean proteins and whole grains.
  • Consult a registered dietitian or doctor to help create a customized weight loss plan.
  • Keep a food journal to increase awareness of your habits.
  • Manage stress through regular relaxation, meditation, yoga, etc.
  • Get enough sleep every night.
  • Weigh yourself 1-2x per week to monitor progress.
  • Stay hydrated by drinking water throughout the day.
  • Lift weights or do bodyweight exercises to retain and build muscle.

Focus on developing healthy, sustainable eating and exercise habits that work for your lifestyle to achieve lasting weight loss success.


Burning 1000 extra calories per day through diet and exercise can lead to weight loss at a rate of about 2 pounds per week. However, it is very challenging for most people to sustain that level of calorie expenditure long-term. A more realistic goal is a 500-750 calorie daily deficit created through moderate calorie reduction and exercise. This can provide healthy, sustainable weight loss over time without the risks and difficulty of an extreme calorie deficit. The key is finding the right balance of diet and physical activity that works for you and that you can maintain consistently. Overall, a gradual lifestyle approach focused on healthy behaviors tends to be most effective for losing weight and keeping it off.

Leave a Comment