Improve Your Overall Health with a Walk Each Day
When considering an exercise program that offers convenience, low-impact and that is easy to manage, walking foots the bill. Find out how a walking exercise regimen can fit into every lifestyle.
Simplicity of Walking Step by Step
Many doctors and medical professionals recommend walking as daily exercise because it is so simple, and almost anyone can do it. Walking for health can be done in all climates, and just 30 minutes every day can result in a measurable health benefit.
The National Institute for Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases Weight Information Network recommends starting a structured walking program that allows for set goals and rewards. The WIN suggests gradually increasing goals such as lengthening walk time from 30 minutes to 45 minutes, and keeping track of walking workouts in a journal.
As with all exercise programs, check with a doctor before implementing a walking program; especially those with heart or lung conditions, who are smokers, pregnant or over 50 years old and not used to moderate exercise.
The Daily Walk and Burning Calories
To lose one pound per week, a person would have to reduce their calorie intake by 3,500; or 500 calories per day. The average walker can burn 100 calories per mile, according to The Walking Site.
The average walking pace should be around 15 minutes per mile, which means a daily walk of 30 minutes would cover 2 miles of walking. Each walker must determine his or her own walking pace, but generally speaking, the pace should increase the heart rate. Walking until out of breath may be too fast, and walking slowly enough to sing along to the mp3 player is too slow.
The Mayo Clinic recommends taking a test walk to determine your actual heart rate, by counting the number of heartbeats within a 10 seconds period. Determining the heart rate can help the walker adjust his or her walking speed.
Health and the Thirty-Minute Walk
The advantages of walking several times a week have been well-documented. For people with chronic medical conditions, such as diabetes, high cholesterol, and high blood pressure, a thirty-minute daily walk can improve their conditions.
In May of 2009 the American Journal of Preventive Medicine showed that walking 3,000 steps in 30 minutes five days a week can help the walker meet U.S. government fitness goals. Walking daily can also improve mood, muscle strength, help reduce weight and relieve stress.
Another benefit to walking workouts will be published this month. Environmental Nutrition reports that a July 26 issue of the medical journal Circulation will contain a study that shows how a daily walk improves overall lung function. A team of experts determined that the exercise can improve lung capacity by 15 to 25 percent.
No matter what style of walking workout, heart healthy walking is a fun and easy to implement workout program. It improves health conditions, and can make walkers happier and more relaxed with every step.