Walking your way to fitness

Most medical professionals, researchers and fitness leaders now agree that walking, once seen as the poor cousin of jogging, is one of the best ways to get fit and healthy. 

Walking requires little specialist equipment, can be done anywhere and is ideal for people of all ages and fitness levels. So, why not hit the pavement and walk your way to fitness this year.

The first steps

Just as you can’t just wake up one morning and decide to run a marathon, you can’t just decide to start race walking for 10 kilometres each day. You need to slowly build up your fitness and technique over a period of time. 

If you are walking for weight loss, you should try to walk for 30 to 60 minutes most days of the week. If you are feeling tired, sore or worn out, take a day off and try doing some simple stretching exercises instead. Then get back into it!

When you first begin walking, try to walk at a faster pace than normal that leaves you breathing heavier than you normally would, but still allows you to carry on a conversation. This means that you are operating within your target heart rate zone (the zone that allows for maximum benefit from exercise but with minimum risk of injury or overexertion). 

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