Starting a Walking Program
Modern times have continued to be stiffer and families pushed into tight working schedules that leave minimal time for engaging in lifestyle practices that promote good health. However, there are still many things one can do to keep fit and avoid the devastating risks of sedentary lifestyles and polluted environments. Simple practices like starting a walking program have been proven to yield incredible results and can help prevent, contain or even reverse various health issues and conditions. Nonetheless, achieving fitness goals will require keen consideration and determination. Here is detailed information on how you can start a fitness walking program, including the benefits and necessary practical steps used in designing such routines.
Why start a walking program?
When people first discover new practices, and workout exercises purported to lead to healthy lifestyles and longevity, they end up with one major question. What are the benefits and how do they apply to me? It is important to identify the reasons for engaging in any particular practice, whether a workout exercises or nutrition systems. Starting a walking program here can lead to many benefits, which are quite straightforward. Walking is without a doubt the easiest ways of losing calories and shedding off extra fat from the body. It is a physical exercise that releases tension from various body muscles and increase’s blood circulation for improved nutrition supply. There are many health benefits tied to walking. The processes which it influences (such as metabolism, breathing, blood circulation, tension elimination and fat combustion) are responsible for most of the fitness goals people pursue. Besides, walking is the simplest and most profitable option for those seeking to achieve various fitness goals. All that is needed is a good pair of shoes, preferred clothes and a desire to walk.
The process of designing walking programs
Although walking is simple and achievable by everyone with good or even not so good legs, it needs considerable thought. There are a number of practices suited to varying types of participants, including beginners, intermediates and seasoned walkers.
• Beginners – For beginners, start by making brisk steps at 3-3.5 mph pace (a mile within 20 minutes) for about 10 minutes per day. Do this for daily the first three consecutive weeks and gradually increase the timeframe by 5 minutes until you are able to walk for about 30 minutes per day? Maintain the routine six days a week for best results. It is important to start slowly and gradually build your speed, distance and times.
• Intermediate – for those who are already in good shape, go directly to this phase. Otherwise, start upgrading to be intermediate after about 40 days of the beginner routine. Aim for a pace between 3.5 and 4.5 miles per hour (a mile per 13-17 minutes) and walk 3 straight miles. Do this 3 to 5 times per week? If your pace is cannot increase to the set level, simply increase the walking distance.
• Seasoned/advanced – Those in excellent fitness conditions and post-intermediate participants can increase their fitness walking intensity into the advanced stage. Include a 10 -15 pound backpack when walking or hiking and target routes, including uphill and downhill terrains. Walk through beaches and sandy landscapes, which increase resistance and add 2 pounds hand weights incorporating arm swinging and motions. Try to perform race walking at about 5-9 mph. You can even join local organizations and competitions to get a shot at some rewards en route to achieve better shape and health.
Walking daily can help you achieve target heart rate and calorie drop. Start with short sessions and build your way to advanced walking with increased pace and resistance practices. Being able to walk comfortably for 30 to 60 minutes at the average speed is simply sufficient to help you meet various fitness goals.
Types of grounds and walking styles
There are quite a number of techniques applied in walking and designing efficient routine programs that can yield desirable results. Using proper techniques can make the practice not only more effective but also enjoyable. Some of the techniques to implement include the following;
• Posture – always keep your head upright and look ahead. The chin section should be in a neutral position (not tucked close to the chest or too high). Relax your shoulders on their natural position on your back rather than hunched over.
• Foot placement – the most effective walking techniques involve following a linear path and sequence. Keep your legs close to a pavement imaginary line and follow it.
• Stride and stride length – finding the right stride length has often been a challenge for many beginners. The simplest way to determine your perfect stride length involves the following; keep your legs slightly apart and lean toward the front transferring your weight front wards. As you do this, stick out your right or left foot to the front (depending on which is more stable remaining on the ground) and catch yourself just before toppling to the ground. This is the perfect stride length which you should maintain for all types of walks. When making a stride, always leave one foot on the ground and step with heels first followed by a rolling on to the ball and then a push off your toes. Avoid slapping the ground as much as possible.
• Arm swing – arm swinging can burn up to 10% more calories and makes the exercise a full-body workout. Bend your arms at the elbow and swing them in steps with your movement forming an arc around your waist.
Apart from walking techniques, you will need to determine the types of grounds preferable for your level. The ground can be tarmac, grassy, paved, artificial carpet rugged nature. It can be a straight path with level landscape or dynamic with corners, uphill and downhill. It is advisable to start with even and straight grounds before engaging in more resistance levels that incorporate hiking techniques.
Whether your aim is to lose weight, burn extra fat, increase energy and endurance or just relieve muscle tension, walking can help you achieve a lot without spending on anything. When starting a walking program, ensure you have comfortable shoes that are optimized for walks and jogs. Heavy boots with big soles are not the best options as well as slim-sole shoes. Walk throughout your day and set various targets, which can be used to monitor progress. You can even buy fitness trackers to collect more data when walking.