Fitness walking is an accessible form of exercise for almost everyone. Walking also has a number of benefits to improve your overall health, strengthen your leg muscles and relieve stress.
What’s more, it can help you lose weight and maintain a hot-looking body shape. Experts estimate a 30-minute fitness walking program three days a week will burn between 120-170 each time.
Although brisk walking is classed as a light-to-moderate activity, it is important to get it right.
Did you know that you can cause aches and pains if you adopt the wrong walking posture?
True story. Check out the dos and don’t to fitness walking below.
DO learn how to walk properly
There’s more to fitness walking than meets the eye. Also, by adopting the right technique, you look like you’re on a mission than simply trying to walk quickly.
The correct posture to adopt whilst fitness walking is to keep your spine erect, bend your arms and swing your elbows. This distributes the weight of your body and helps your muscles strengthen evenly.
You should also push from your toes and land on your heels to keep your pace fast and protect your ankles. A lot of work comes from the hips and buttocks which is great for weight loss. Also breathe through your nose and out through your mouth. Take deep breathes. Filling your lungs with oxygen helps your immune system function better.
DON’T focus on speed and distance
If you’re just starting out on a fitness walking program, don’t try to do too much at once, and avoid setting unrealistic expectations. The sensible strategy is to listen to your body and ease yourself into an exercise routine.
Newbies tend to focus on speed and distance. That’s not the most important target in the initial stages – so build these metrics into the program once you have worked out achievable targets.
DO wear the right clothing
Walking shoes that support your feet, ankles and knees are essential for fitness walking, especially if you are walking across uneven terrain. Shoes typically survive for around 400 miles before they start wearing out from the inside so avoid nylon inners that will tear and cause blisters.
Investing in the right clothing is also recommended. Moisture-wicking clothes are ideal for the summer, but in the winter you need outer clothing that will keep the warmth in and help you to avoid sweating.
DON’T drink caffeinated beverages
Caffeine is great for weight loss but is also a diuretic which means it dehydrates the body of water. Before you perform any exercise activity that demands physical effort and makes you sweat, don’t drink caffeine-based beverages. Stick to water.
DO Change Speed
If losing weight is the goal for your fitness walking program, intermittently alter the speed you walk at. Interval walking changes body composition by burning body fat increasing muscles thus improving your overall BMI (body mass index).
Now you know the do’s and don’ts of fitness walking, check out a strategy for building a fitness walking program.