Walking is one of the greatest exercises you can do to firm your thighs and lift your bum. Recent research suggests that every hour you spend walking – even power walking – may add two hours to your life. Walking can also help lower your risk of heart disease, stroke, type-2 diabetes, cancer, and depression. To reap the benefits, try these 8 tips:
8 Tips For A Power Walking Workout
1. Wear comfy, well-fitting shoes
They should be lightweight and breathable. Look for thick cushioning in the heels, good support, and flexibility. Replace them after three to six months.
2. Start with a warm-up
Stroll at a comfortable pace for five to 10 minutes. Then pick it up for the rest of your walk.
3. Set goals
Aim for four to six walks every week. “If you’re a beginner, shoot for 20 to 30 minutes. If you’re more advanced, take it up to 45- or 60-minute sessions,” Juliet Kaska, a certified personal trainer in Los Angeles, told Webmd.
4. Stand tall
Pay attention to your posture. Keep your head up, stomach in, and shoulders relaxed. Lift your chest and engage your abs.
5. Stride naturally
Point your toes and knees forward. Straighten your front leg but don’t lock your knee. Try to land on your heel instead of the middle or front of your foot, and then roll your weight forward. Use natural step length to avoid over-striding.
6. Squeeze and tighten
“Try not to just walk forward from the thighs or hip flexors,” said Kaska said, “Squeeze and step.”
7. Swing your arms
Keep your shoulders relaxed, so your arms swing freely, so your back and neck don’t tense up. Keep your arms bent. Swinging them will propel you forward and help you move faster. Don’t use hand weights. They put stress on your elbows and shoulders.
Walk at a slower pace for 5 to 10 minutes. Then stretch your hamstrings, calves, chest, shoulders, and back.
For more information, read this study from Harvard Medical School to encourage yourself even more.