New research finds that people who walk slowly are more vulnerable to COVID-19 and more likely to die earlier than people that regularly engage in brisk walking
Brisk walking offers a plethora of health benefits, including better sleep, weight management and reduced stress levels.
As walking continues to rise in popularity, fast walkers are right to feel smug about our virtuous pastime.
A recent study shows that walking at a fast pace enables you to feel the health benefits of walking. Conversely, walking slowly is associated with greater mortality risk.
New Research on Brisk Walking
A recent study examined the links between body mass index (BMI), walking pace and the risk of suffering severely or dying from COVID-19.
Conducted by the National Institute for Health Research in Leicester, the study considered the walking speeds of 412,596 people from self-reported data. Participants were middle-aged and contributed to UK Biobank data collection.
Research showed that slow walkers were 2.5 times more likely to experience severe side-effects from COVID-19 than their speedier counterparts! This risk was uniformly high in slow walkers of normal weight and obese weight.
Are You Dragging Your Heels?
How quickly do you need to walk to reap the associated health rewards? According to the study, a slow walking speed is less than three miles per hour, a steady speed is three to four miles per hour, and brisk walking is over four miles per hour.
Do You Know Your Walking Speed?
There’s more to life than tracking every metric of our daily activity. But if you’ve never tracked your walking speed before, you may have no idea how fast you’re really walking, or what distance you’re covering.
There are a number of apps you can use to measure your pace, but Strava is probably the most popular. It allows you to view your walking speed, route and make connections with walkers you know.
Increase Your Walking Speed with Sweatcoin
We’ll have you brisk walking in no time! Use Sweatcoin to earn credit for your steps. Sweatcoin converts your steps into cash value, to help you buy health products, donate to charity or pool your efforts and save up for larger items.
Challenge yourself to reach a certain number of sweatcoins in an hour, and increase this number each week to make those feet move faster.
Other tips for brisk walking:
- Stepping soundtrack: Your soundtrack has an unconscious impact on your rhythm. If you usually listen to a podcast or mellow tunes while you walk, switch up your soundtrack and opt for something more upbeat, with a quicker rhythm, and watch the steps pile up.
- Wear comfortable shoes: Nothing hinders a speedy walk more than flip-floppy sandals or ill-fitting shoes. When you go for a brisk walk, treat it as your exercise and dress appropriately, with comfortable socks and trainers.
- Beat the competition: Set a step challenge with friends. The more steps you need to get in to win, the quicker you’ll take them.