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Walk Your Way to Weight Loss

By Edited Mar 14, 2016 2 3

Fat Burning Walking Plan

Weight Loss Tips

We have all heard that one of the best weight loss tips is to build muscle and lose weight while walking, and you may even have tried it in the past. Unfortunately, if you didn't quickly see the results you were hoping for, you may have given up. However, if you are like many people, you would still like to achieve a healthy weight loss, without taking drugs or getting weight loss surgery. What can you do differently in the future to burn fat faster and achieve safe weight loss while walking?

Walking Women

Start Your Walking Program Slowly

Although you may want to try everything at once, it is best to start slowly and set a pace that you know you can maintain. Ideally, you should try walking for an hour a day to achieve natural weight loss. Although walking 30 minutes a day will help you maintain your current weight and fitness level, you need to set a higher goal if you are actually trying to lose weight and improve your fitness. However, if 30 minutes is all you are able to do at first, then go ahead and start at that level. Gradually add more time once you are comfortable with 30 minutes of walking.

Once you are able to walk at a steady pace for an hour, your body will eventually become efficient and you will need to do more to maximize the health benefits you can gain from walking. Eventually, you will want to add some of the other activities that are mentioned below.

Make sure you have good walking shoes.  You can even order them on Amazon:

Quick link to walking shoes for women from Amazon.com.

Vary Your Walking Pace and Incline

Although it may be pleasant to take a stroll through the neighborhood on a sunny day, it is important to pick up the pace once in a while so that you break a sweat. This will rev up your metabolism, and increase the number of calories that you burn … not just at the moment, but for hours afterwards.

Think of your walk as a type of interval training, which means you walk at a nice steady pace most of the time, but break it up by walking briskly for a minute or two out of every five minute period. Gradually, it will become easier to walk fast during the entire walk.

In addition to walking briskly once in a while, incorporate hills or stairs into your walking routine. Walking uphill and downhill requires you to utilize different muscles than you use when you walk only in flat areas. As you strengthen your muscles, you should begin to achieve natural weight loss. Make sure you combine your walking with a safe weight loss plan that includes watching what you eat.

Vary the Terrain Where You Walk

If you normally walk on a sidewalk in your neighborhood, look for other areas where you will enjoy a different view, and be able to work a bit harder. Walking on the beach is excellent for building leg strength and endurance. Sign up to join a hiking group that visits some of the state parks and wildlife preserves in your area. This will make your walk more interesting, and the time will pass quickly. If there is a large hill in your city, visit it and periodically try to see if you can make it to the top, and how long it takes you.

Find a Place to Walk in Bad Weather

I have a group of women that I walk with at the beach. However, even in Southern California the weather is not always cooperative. As an alternative, we sometimes walk at an indoor mall. This provides a fun change of scenery, and we enjoy the opportunity to window shop before the stores open. It also keeps us from simply skipping our walk in bad weather.

Whenever we want an even better workout, we go to our community gym. There, we are able to walk on treadmills as well as use some of the other exercise equipment. Whatever we choose to do, at least we don't skip our exercise on rainy mornings!

Bring Walking Poles or Other Equipment Along on Your Walk

There are other items that you may want to bring with you while you go on your fitness walk. For example, you may want to bring a jump rope and periodically pause during your walk and skip rope for a few minutes.

Hand weights are another accessory you may want to carry. You can start with the lightest ones possible and go up to 2 lb weights, eventually. Exercise tubing or bands are also lightweight, and easy to carry with you. You can use them to stretch and exercise your arms while you are walking.

Nordic Walking Poles, or walking sticks, have also become popular for fitness walkers. The Nordic Walking Poles advertise that they will increase the number of calories you burn by 20%. These poles look like ski poles, and they make it necessary for you to lift them and move your arms while walking. Although they are light-weight, this little bit of extra effort appears to pay big dividends.

Quick link to walking poles from Amazon.com.

Keep Track of Your Progress

Many walkers like to use a pedometer, so they can monitor their progress. For the first week or two, just make a note of how many steps you are actually taking. Then, gradually made a conscious effort to increase the number of steps you take each day until you reach 10,000.

In addition to counting steps, try to keep tract of other milestones you achieve during your walking program. Are you challenging yourself to walk up steeper hills? Are you walking faster? Are you losing weight? Do your jeans fit better? Whatever improvements you see, jot them down.

Watch the Way You Walk

Many exercise physiologists say that we should also pay attention to the way that we walk. For example, we should roll our feet from the heel all the way through to the toes with each step. In fact, I have read that we should actually exaggerate the roll of our feet in order to make our glutes work harder and take the stress off of our knees. You may want to give it a try.

Keep Challenging Yourself

Once you have a set exercise routine, it is easy to just be satisfied with it, and stop challenging ourselves. However, if we want to experience weight loss and maintain the maximum health benefits, it is important that we keep trying to work our bodies a bit harder … as long as we don't try to overwork injured or stressed muscles. Keep moving, but don't ignore pain. Get it checked out by a sports doctor or trainer, and see if there are any changes you can make to your routine that will keep you from being sidelined by an injury. Enjoy walking, and keep it up. You may be surprised at the healthy weight loss you will experience along the way!

If you are interested in keeping yourself and your family safe and healthy, you may also be interested in reading some of the articles listed below:

Why I Love the New Weight Watchers Points Plus Plan  

Hiking California's Laguna Coast Wilderness Areas

Products to Help You Quit Smoking

The Perfect Way to Rev Up Your Walking Routine



Dec 31, 2010 4:49pm
Great information. I resolve to lose weight this year - again.
Dec 31, 2010 6:15pm
Excellent article! The walking stick is especially important for walking in nature preserves where you encounter changing terrain.
Jan 7, 2011 5:58pm
Great info! Walking is an exercise many people can make a part of their regular, daily routine.
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