Today I am excited to be teaming up with Chris Freytag from GetHealthyU to share some of her expertise on getting in shape!
Walking is a form of exercise that pretty much everyone can do! And, as every FitBit enthusiast knows, the healthy benchmark that has been ingrained in our heads is 10,000 steps a day. Easy enough, right? Well, I’m absolutely a supporter of everyone getting in as many steps as possible, but when it comes to walking for weight loss, you need to consider the intensity and consistency of your walking routines. I want you to pick up your effort and explore how to boost your walking workouts for weight loss. By understanding how hard you are working and finding ways to fit it in your daily life, weight loss is in your horizon!
The Benefits of Walking
Let’s start by taking a look at what walking has to offer as a form of exercise. Find any doctor or weight loss expert and you’re going to hear the advice that walking is chalk-full of benefits beyond calorie burn. The Mayo Clinic reports that regular walking will also:
Aside from the health benefits, walking offers practical benefits as well:
However, here is the clincher for those who are looking to lose weight by walking: adding intensity to your walking routine is the secret sauce. Since so many people don’t have time for leisurely two hour walks everyday (that would be nice!) then making the most of the time you have is key. And how do you do that? You to lose weight.
I’m not saying stop the constant flow of steps (yes it’s still a good feeling to get in 10,000 steps a day.) But try to add some intensity walks to your week to increase your caloric burn for weight loss. By either wearing a heart rate monitor or paying attention to your perceived exertion, you can up your calorie burn, improve your lung capacity, and absolutely take off some pounds.
That’s why I’ve created three high intensity walking routines that you can do indoors or outdoors depending on the time of year and your lifestyle. These walking workouts are going to challenge you to work a little harder than most walks where you may be zoning out in front of your TV or calmly walking the dog.These are 20-minute routines to take your heart rate up and increase your calorie burn.
So how hard should you be working? I want you to get into your “comfortably hard” zone. That is where you are no longer breathing through your nose, but now you are breathing through your mouth. You can talk a sentence or two in a row but then need to take a breath. By taking the intensity up to this zone, you will get more bang for your buck. In today’s day and age of “I don’t have time” as the number one excuse for skipping exercise, my advice will always be go harder when you can!
Of course eating healthy is at least 50% of this equation.You can’t out train a bad diet, period. But if you have that under control, then using my tips to and keeping a consistent routine over the course of time will lead to long lasting weight loss.
The average 150-pound person will burn around 200 activity calories during these 20-minute intensity walks. Eat a few hundred less calories a day and you can see the pounds start to peel off. (Science tells us that you need to burn an extra 3500 calories to lose one pound. Yet, keep in mind that that is simplified. It also matters what type of calories you are eating and the quality of your sleep.)
Good Walking Form
I would be remiss if I didn’t discuss form. Is there a “right” way to walk? Yes. Even walking, in all of its low-impact glory, can cause problems if you don’t do it properly. Be sure to consider the following recommendations:
A Few Other Tips To Get Started
If you are new to walking, easing your way into this new lifestyle will keep your body injury-free and ensure your longevity with a routine. Here are some ideas.
Try to add any combination of these intensity walks to your routine 3-5 times a week and intensify your weight loss routine!
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