3 ways to get the most benefits out of your daily walk

Has walking become your new workout? Since fitness facilities are closed, we need to get a little more creative with how to stay physically active during stay-at-home orders. For many, walking has become a new escape from life indoors, and even a main form of exercise. If that’s the case for you, there are simple things you can do to boost the benefits of walking. Here are three of them.

Fix your form: Just because walking has been a part of your life since you were a toddler, that doesn’t mean you’re performing the movement correctly for maximum benefits. There are a number of structural deviations that can occur while walking, such as an overly tilted torso, rounded shoulders, or a subpar stride. These are the top checkpoints to keep in mind for good form.

  • When stepping, roll from heel to toe.
  • Pump your arms for momentum. The speed of your arms will influence how fast your feet move.
  • Focus your gaze toward the horizon to prevent hunching forward.
  • Stick with a shorter stride to decrease the impact on joints.
  • Maintain alignment of your upper body with ears over collarbone and shoulders over hips.

Add intervals: Variations in speed and incline are an easy way to not only spice up your steps but also increase your heart strength and lung endurance. Try alternating walking at an easy pace with one-minute bursts of jogging, or find a local trail in which you can amp up your elevation and fine-tune your balance skills. These minor tweaks in your time spent trekking can amp up your caloric expenditure, muscle definition, and balance, and ward off any boredom that may come from the same old walking routine.

Mix in a new move: Your neighborhood can be the ultimate workout space. You just need to know where to look. Transform a curb into a stepper, or a ledge into a place to perform an incline push-up. By breaking up your walk with strength-training moves, you’re stimulating and encouraging your body to grow in new ways.

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3 ways to get the most benefits out of your daily walk

Has walking become your new workout? Since fitness facilities are closed, we need to get a little more creative with how to stay physically active during stay-at-home orders. For many, walking has become a new escape from life indoors, and even a main form of exercise. If that’s the case for you, there are simple things you can do to boost the benefits of walking. Here are three of them.

Fix your form: Just because walking has been a part of your life since you were a toddler, that doesn’t mean you’re performing the movement correctly for maximum benefits. There are a number of structural deviations that can occur while walking, such as an overly tilted torso, rounded shoulders, or a subpar stride. These are the top checkpoints to keep in mind for good form.

  • When stepping, roll from heel to toe.
  • Pump your arms for momentum. The speed of your arms will influence how fast your feet move.
  • Focus your gaze toward the horizon to prevent hunching forward.
  • Stick with a shorter stride to decrease the impact on joints.
  • Maintain alignment of your upper body with ears over collarbone and shoulders over hips.

Add intervals: Variations in speed and incline are an easy way to not only spice up your steps but also increase your heart strength and lung endurance. Try alternating walking at an easy pace with one-minute bursts of jogging, or find a local trail in which you can amp up your elevation and fine-tune your balance skills. These minor tweaks in your time spent trekking can amp up your caloric expenditure, muscle definition, and balance, and ward off any boredom that may come from the same old walking routine.

Mix in a new move: Your neighborhood can be the ultimate workout space. You just need to know where to look. Transform a curb into a stepper, or a ledge into a place to perform an incline push-up. By breaking up your walk with strength-training moves, you’re stimulating and encouraging your body to grow in new ways.

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