What is the least amount of exercise I can do to lose weight?

What is the least amount of exercise I can do to lose weight?

The least amount of exercise recommended for adults is:

Aerobic exercise


Strength training

  • 8-10 strength training exercises 2 times a week.
  • 8-12 repetitions of each exercise.

This is in addition to your regular daily activities such as walking to and from your car into work, grocery shopping, etc.

Another way to state the minimum recommendation is to burn at least 1,000 calories per week through exercise.

This minimum recommendation may be enough exercise to lose weight at first if you currently don’t exercise. However, over time, progress to 200-300 minutes of weekly exercise to lose weight and keep it off.

Physical Activity and Public Health: Updated Recommendation for Adults from the American College of Sports Medicine and the American Heart Association
ACSM Position Stand: Appropriate Intervention Strategies for Weight Loss and Prevention of Weight Gain for Adults

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Stephanie Averkamp

About the Author was created by Stephanie Averkamp, a recognized health and fitness professional and sole-author of the content on this website. Stephanie's approach to weight loss emphasizes making small, realistic, and permanent lifestyle changes. Read more...

Stephanie Averkamp

Our Approach: Short-term solutions (like dieting) are unrealistic and ineffective because at some point they end. As soon as a diet or program ends, so do the results. Permanent weight loss is a journey; it's not a race or competition and there is no finish line. Read more...