Walking is one of the very best ways to ease into the exercise routine. As I mentioned in previous Blog post, the best way to start being active is to moderate your lifestyle activities, especially increasing your walking during the day. This type of exercise is ideal for the start, because is already a part of everyday life, it does not require you to purchase anything special and can’t cause you any harm, if you increase intensity gradually.
The beauty of walking is that:
- it is a very flexible workout and can fit in any busy schedule
- it is so easy and natural that it hardly feels like an exercise program
- you can regulate the intensity and duration easily, which is important especially at the beginning
- it is inexpensive and you can walk almost anywhere and at any time
- it can be an active relaxation after your dinner, as it can be an intensive aerobic workout
- it can also transform your health, lowering your risk of health problems, such as high blood pressure, heart disease, high cholesterol, and type 2 diabetes and increases bone density
- it can totally transform your figure, when making also small changes in your diet
For your walking routine prepare:
- the shoes with proper arch support, a firm heel and thick flexible soles. They will cushion your feet and absorb vibrations, protecting your joints, knees and back from injuries.
- clothes that will keep you dry and comfortable. Cotton shirts or breathable materials that absorb sweat are ideal.
- a safe walking route. If you walk at dawn, dusk or night wear reflective or brightly colored clothing and always have your cell phone with you.
- a green light from your health care provider. If you have any heart trouble, diabetes, asthma or when you are physically active, you are breathless and have pains in your chest, neck, shoulder, obligatory consult your physician before you start any exercise plan.
- a bottle of isotonic drink to carry with you
Divide your walking workout in three parts:
- warming up
- working out and
- cooling down
When you’re warming up, you walk at a lower pace preparing your joints, muscles and cardiovascular system for more intensive work. Working out is the part where you have a brisk walk time and cooling down is again a slowly walk with stretching of the main groups of muscles at the end.
After being comfortable with a regular walking workout, you can customize and increase the intensity of your walking with:
- working your arms
- using walking sticks
- walking faster doing the same distance
- placing one foot directly in front of the other as do the professionals
- heading for the hills
At the beginning, don’t pay attention on how many calories you burn, instead enjoy in breathing the fresh air, feeling your body move and being inspired by the nature that is surrounding you.
So just try to enjoy yourself when walking.
Starting with a 15 minutes walk is absolutely fine. All you need to do later on is correct your walking technique, walk faster and for longer and it will become the best workout for losing your weight.