Weight Loss and Walking

WALKING…IT CAN MAKE A DIFFERENCE
One of the things I have learned is the connection between weight loss and walking. I started walking some months ago and have really enjoyed it. Walking Can make a difference in your overall health.

A few months ago, my department held a pedometer challenge at work. I decided to join and I am so glad I did. From February 1 to May 1, 2017, I ended thewoman-walking-with-backpack challenge with a total of 1,209,001 steps!

I have since joined another pedometer challenge. I do everything possible to get my daily steps. Try some of my ideas below to incorporate steps into your day:

• Walk around the house while on a phone call
• Park at the far end of the parking lot of the grocery store
• While in a store, push the cart up and down each aisle
• Step in place while watching T.V. at home or standing in store lines (warning: you may get a few strange looks)
• Take long walks in your neighborhood
• Take the stairs instead of the elevator at work
• Incorporate a variety of other exercises you enjoy into your day

Even in inclement weather, you can still get steps in around the house. There are also walking DVDs available. It is amazing how quickly steps add up just by walking in your home even while doing household chores.

WHY WALK?
There have been studies that suggest people who increase their walking to 10,000 steps daily experience health benefits. If you are someone who is just starting an exercise regimen, start with what is comfortable for YOU. It may be a good idea to start out with a smaller target number of steps then work your way up. That is completely up to you and your doctor to decide. The main thing to remember is keep moving!

WEIGHT LOSS AND WALKING
Something great to incorporate while you are walking for weight loss is interval training. This is when you intermittently boost your heart rate by walking faster, or with a slight jog, for a while then bringing your heart rate down with a slower walk. Doing this interval training is a great way to work out because it helps you burn fat faster. You may decide how many sets and how long each set of intervals training you would like to incorporate during your walk. For example, you may choose to start walking at a slower pace for five minutes, then start walking faster or slight jog for one minute.

Walking in Intervals is Beneficial for Fat Loss - Weight Loss and Walking

When walking, keep some of these tips in mind:

1. Choose flexible yet comfortable, cushioned, and lightweight shoes for walking. Having the right shoe will give you the comfort needed but also maintain your health so that you don’t obtain injuries.

2. Walk briskly to music to help you stay motivated. There are all types of technology-related items that allow you to have your favorite workout music playing while you are walking. Try synchronizing your steps to the beat of the music and this will help your motivation as well.

3. Walk shortly after you wake and before breakfast to lower body fat. How does this happen? Because carbohydrates we consume turn into glucose. Some of that glucose is stored as glycogen for later use. While sleeping, your body has depleted the glycogen levels, so when you walk first thing in the morning, instead of getting the energy it needs from glycogen, the energy needed will come from your body fat instead.

4. Count every step you make. While in the walking challenges, I made sure that I counted every step by always wearing my LifeTrak watch. It is amazing how much your steps will add up even as you are doing daily chores around the house.

5. Keep a journal of your steps. Recording information such as how many steps, distance of the walk, time of day or night and days you walk will increase effectiveness of your walking. If you can, try to get into a walking challenge with a friend or group of people. A little friendly competition will help you stay motivated to get those steps in every day as well.

journal-steps

6. Don’t let yourself become hungry during the day. Therefore, take a pack of almonds with you on your walk. Almonds are said to give you a fuller feeling and the last thing you want to do is go on a wonderful walk then eat more than the calories you burned.

7. If you are not a morning person and like to walk later in the day, consider walking after dinner. Research has found that walking after dinner is helpful in the aid of digestion, lowering blood sugar, and burning calories for weight loss.

HOW TO OBTAIN EVEN BETTER RESULTS
Would you like to obtain even better results? One way to obtain even better results is making sure to get your steps in daily along with incorporating a healthy weight loss program could help you obtain even better results. Make sure you do your homework to choose a program that is nutritional and going to work for you. During my pedometer challenge, I decided it was a great time to eat healthier. It resulted in awesome results and I started what I call “shopping in my closet”. I am now able to wear clothes I haven’t been able to fit in years!

Another way you may obtain better results is to add light hand or ankle weights while you are walking. However, before using weights while walking, consult with your doctor. Adding weights can burn an average of 5 – 15 percent more calories. Using dumbbells or wrist weights, is a great way to increase calorie burn as well as activate muscles in the upper body. Walking with ankle weights results in more calorie burn and combines cardio with strength training. If you decide to use ankle weights, it is recommended you limit the weight to no more than three pounds. Any more weight than that may result in discomfort or injury. Before walking, insure ankle weights are strapped on securely and remove them if you experience any discomfort or pain.

Walking With Dumbbells is Great for Calorie Burn - Weight Loss and Walking

If you are a beginner, do not start walking using weights. Instead work yourself up to using weights so that you can first become familiar with exercising.

DO YOU WANT TO BURN EVEN MORE CALORIES?
In addition to those ideas above, there are other calorie burning activities you may want to incorporate into your walk.

1. Intervals – While this exercise will help burn more calories, your metabolism will stay boosted for a longer amount of time. How do you do intervals while walking? The below is an example of how you can incorporate intervals:
a) Walk moderately for one minute
b) Walk fast as you can for 30 – 60 seconds
c) Walk moderately for 3 – 5 minutes
d) Repeat steps b and c four or five more times during the course of your walk

2. Walk on Incline – Adjust your treadmill or walk on a variety of terrain. However, be careful when doing this kind of interval exercise if you have back problems.
a) On treadmill – incline 3% – 4%
b) Outside – hillswoman-walking

3. Use ski poles – This engages your upper body by getting your arms and body involved.  To use ski poles correctly, remember to:
a)  At 45 degree angle behind you
b) Push off them to propel forward

4. Swing your arms – By swinging your arms while bending the elbow and holding them at a 90 degree angle instead of hanging straight down, you will tone your muscles.

FINAL FOOD FOR THOUGHT
Walking can be very beneficial to your overall health. Try to get in at least 10,000 steps per day. To increase your results, incorporate a weight loss program and, if permitted, hand or ankle weights as well as intervals. It can make you feel better and have an impact on your weight.

Remember before starting any exercise or diet program, consult with your doctor.

Do you incorporate walking into your daily routine? I would love to hear from you.

 


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8 thoughts on “Weight Loss and Walking

  1. I am a member of an Australian website Walking With Attitude that you can join and challenge yourself or become part of a team. You can manually enter your steps/exercise or sync with a device such as a Fitbit, which is what I do. However, I haven’t incorporated any of your suggestions such as intervals or incline! I have a treadmill and get up and exercise on that prior to getting my son up for school in the mornings. I must put into my exercise plan to incorporate intervals and incline. Thank you for a great post!

    1. Megan, thank you for your comments. It is great to know you are incorporating walking into your daily routine. That is awesome. If you incorporate interval training into your walking routine, it will be a more effective way to burn calories. I certainly wish you the best in your journey to better health.

      1. Hi Yvette

        Today I used a walking at home YouTube video I found and OMG! what a workout. So much better than just walking on the treadmill. I used my arms as well. Think I might be a bit sore tomorrow!

        Regards,
        Megan

        1. Megan, thank you for letting me know and so glad you enjoyed the walking at home video! If this was effective for you, you have found something different to incorporate in exercise regimen and that is great! Sorry you will be sore, but that means it worked those muscles. Keep up the great work. You are walking to a healthier you!

  2. I have been quite busy lately and haven’t gotten the chance to walk, as I normally do.
    I normally walk 40 minutes daily with a neighbor. I have even been on pedometer challenges established through my work place.
    This may sound cliche, but I plan on going back to my walking routine for the upcoming year. My thighs aren’t as firm as they use to be when I use to walk. 🙂 I need to tone up.

    1. Sheree, thank you for visiting my site. I appreciate your visit and comments. With the holidays upon us, I totally understand how it’s a bit difficult to keep up with the exercising. As long as you start again, that is the main thing. Walking is a great way to tone up. Keep up the great work with walking and have a healthy holiday season.

  3. Accidentally stumbled upon this post, but awesome info!

    Walking is great indeed, but it’s often neglected. 10k steps per day ain’t all that much actually, but the benefits are more than welcome. I’m a gym kind of guy so walking ain’t a huge challenge for me, but you’re right about how beneficial it might be for people with sedentary lifestyles.

    Cheers and thanks for the encouraging post again!

    1. Simon, I am so glad you stumbled upon my site and found it to be an awesome post.  Thank you for the comments, as well. In the past, I never knew the real importance around getting in the 10k steps per day. I feel the concept around “keep it moving” has a real significance here. As long as people find a way to just keep moving, no matter how they decide to do it, is so beneficial to the body. I do all kinds of things to get my steps in –  run/walk intervals on the treadmill, long walks in my neighborhood, even dance moves. Making sure I keep track of all my steps with my LifeTrak Watch makes a difference. At the end of the day, it is quite surprising how quickly it all adds up.

      Once again, thank you and I wish you a healthy day.

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