It’s coming to that time of year again… New Year’s resolution time!! Number one on that list is usually a pledge to get into better shape or lose weight. Very commendable, but how exactly do we achieve this wonderful goal? Believe it or not, simply walking can be the most effective way to improve your overall fitness and health. We all can be a little bit lazy and use the escalator or elevator at work or while shopping. We here at HPFY can help you understand the benefits of walking and keep that New Year’s resolution!!
Every coherent person understands the benefits of exercise. One of the easiest ways to get started with a fitness regimen is by walking. It may not be as glamorous as going to the gym or a yoga studio, but the benefits of a regular walking schedule are undeniable. Some benefits to walking can include:
It goes without saying that the faster and farther you walk, the more you will benefit from your walks. The same can be said for the frequency with which you walk. More is better, but you should start slow and steadily increase both your speed and distance. You can keep track of your progress with a fitness tracker so you know when you’re ready for the next level.
Once you have committed to a daily or weekly routine of walking, compliance with this schedule is the key to its efficacy. You must make sure you stick to your schedule. No excuses!! Start slowly and get comfortable before increasing any distance or intensity, but once you have there are a few ways to make sure your effort is not in vain. It may seem silly, but your technique for walking can turn a normal walk into an exercise stride. This basically relies on proper posture and purposeful movements. Some tips for an effective exercise walk can include:
As with any exercise routine, you should check with your physician to be sure what you are doing is safe and appropriate for you. Each of us is different and so should our exercise routine. Once you have progressed in your exercise routine, feel free to add wrist weights or ankle weights to add a little bit more resistance in order to pump up your workout. Be sure to wear appropriate footwear, such as correctly fitting sneakers, and make sure your route is clear of obstructions, like cracked sidewalks. It is critical that you should warm up by walking slowly at first and pick up the pace as you walk your route. After exercising should always cool down by walking slowly and then stretch gently to call it a day. If you should feel any pain, you should stop and consult your physician.
Walking is a great way to gently start reaping the benefits of exercise. Make sure you set realistic goals as you begin. While it is good to tax yourself, it is this gentle buildup that will increase your compliance and help you stick to your walking routine. Remember, slow and steady wins the race!!
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Kevin Cleary has been a Health Products For You contributor for many years and has a degree in marketing. His health and wellness journey has a very personal meaning and has guided him in his content writing for HPFY.
In 2006, ...
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