Many people don’t think of walking as a great way to get fit. However, power walking for fitness may be better than jogging in many respects. Walking doesn’t need special equipment, it is convenient to do almost anywhere and can fit into almost every schedule. Even if you are busy working most of the day, you can do some power walking on a treadmill desk and still fit your fitness routine into your day.
Power Walking Can Melt Away Excess Weight
Walking is one of the simplest and most beneficial of the low-impact workouts due to the fact that your feet are always in contact with the ground. This natural technique reduces the chances of injury. It is safer than running or jogging. Power walking, which is walking at a speed of three to five miles per hour, offers the same benefits as jogging, but with a reduced risk of injury.
For many individuals, running for exercises isn’t ideal because it requires more physical exertion than walking. However, with regular walking habits, you can use power walking techniques and still gain all the benefits of jogging. Increasing your walking pace is all that you need to do to increase your calorie burn so that it equals jogging. An example of this is a 150 pound person burns roughly 300 calories by walking at 4.5 mph for one hour. This is the same calorie burn rate as a person who jogs at 4 mph for 1 hour. Sometimes a fast walk beats a slow jog and is easier on your joints!
Overall Health Improvement
A regular exercise routine will help you to combat illness much better. When you do power walking consistently, it can help to raise your good cholesterol levels and decrease the bad cholesterol levels. It will also improve your cardiovascular health. Improved cardiovascular health helps the body to lower high blood pressure and reduces your risk of type 2 Diabetes. Power walking can also help to decrease the likelihood of serious health issues, such as cancer and stroke.
A daily regimen of power walking can help to reduce the stresses associated with regular day to day living. One session per day can help to redirect your focus and concentration away from stressful situations and environments. It is also an efficient way to engage in time alone and relieve tension. As you walk, endorphins are released in the brain through exercise and result in a more relaxed disposition and a calmer state of mind. This allow you to remove yourself from the hectic and stressful pace of the office or a busy home atmosphere. A power walk will leave you renewed and refreshed.
Improved Performance of Daily Tasks
Everyday tasks require a degree of strength to perform. Through power walking, you utilize both the upper and lower body strength. This results in stronger muscles and bones. As you tone up your body through power walking, the improved body conditioning enables you to carry out the day to day tasks easier. Regular exercise heightens your ability to perform more challenging tasks, such as lifting up heavy objects with ease. As you consistently incorporate power walking into your day, you will feel better about your productivity.
Power Walking Techniques
When it comes to power walking there are some specific rules that you should follow for maximum benefit. This is not the same as race walking, which is governed by specific rules. Power walking simply means that you are increasing your walking pace to cover a mile in less than 15 minutes. At this pace, you are walking faster than 4 mph, which is the average jogging pace for most people.
- Pay attention to your pace. You should gradually increase your pace over time as it becomes easier. Do your normal warm up and cool down routine.
- Pay attention to your posture. Make sure that you are looking straight ahead, not at the ground. Don’t use too many vigorous aerobic arm movements. For the greatest power walking results, allow your body to do the work and leave the hand and ankle weights at home.
- Keep your elbows at about a 90 degree angle and swing your arms faster, but not too high. The arms should never cross your body. Your hands should never swing higher than your chest. Allow the feet to follow the natural pace of the arms.
- Concentrate on each stride to push off with your toes.
- Sometimes power walkers count their steps and aim for about 135 steps per minute.
- As you walk, tighten your abs and glutes. Some power walkers tilt their pelvis slightly forward. Focus on shorter, quicker strides.
- Breathe naturally as you walk. If you find that you start to get out of breath, slow down.
After a few weeks of regular power walking, you’ll discover that you are burning more calories and are feeling fitter than ever.
Power Walking Mistakes to Avoid
1. Do not over stride. Keep your stride natural.
2. Do not use too vigorous arm movements. This will throw off your gait.
3. Do not look at the ground. This tends to worsen your posture.
4. Do not hunch your shoulders. Poor posture and hunched shoulders will compromise your breathing.
5. Do not carry hand weights or place weights on your ankles. While it seems like a good idea, it can be detrimental to your posture. You want to ensure that you have good posture and the walking benefits you.
As you can see, power walking not only has many health benefits, but it is a simple exercise to start incorporating into your day. The best way to make power walking a daily habit is to set aside a time each day to go on a power walk. This can be in the morning, during lunchtime, or in the evening. Stick with your schedule and make sure you get that hour of power walking done. You’ll start to notice more focus and energy and eventually, you’ll start to shed some of those extra pounds!