We were undoubtedly avid runners when we were younger. Running track and cross country may be simple for some, but others may participate in 5k mud races or color runs for worthy causes. However, all of that high-impact jogging has taken its toll on our knees these days. This is why you’ll enjoy power walking so much!
Here are some of the advantages:
What Is Power Walking?
Power walking, often known as speed walking, is more than just taking a quick stroll. When power walking, you walk at a speed that is faster than your usual walking rate. A regular walking pace for most people is 3 mph, therefore aim for 4 to 5.5 mph while power walking.
Power walking necessitates maintaining at least one foot in touch with the ground at all times. This implies that if you are still standing, you will be unable to walk normally.
Your heart rate rises with power or speed walking. Power walking may burn the same amount of calories as jogging without the severe pressure on your joints!
Power Walking vs. Running
Running has several health advantages and is one of the least expensive methods to exercise when compared to other sorts of activities. Its intensity enhances fitness and burns more calories effectively than other exercises. Running, on the other hand, is a high-impact workout that may regularly result in injuries if you’re not careful, and it won’t help you build your upper body much.
Runners are particularly vulnerable because the impacts on their feet, knees, ankles, and other joints can cause a slew of problems, including:
- Shin splints
- Plantar fasciitis
- Stress fractures
- Achilles tendonitis
Power Walking vs. Jogging
Power walking, on the other hand, differs from running, jogging, or typical walking due to the increased intensity generated by arm movement, longer steps, and a quicker pace. This allows you to reap all of the benefits of running while avoiding the problems described above.
Hidden Benefits of Power Walking
It’s incredible that power walking is a kind of exercise that doesn’t involve any pricey equipment, particular athletic talent, applications or technology, or a gym membership.
Power walking is simple to do and may be done in any open space. Let’s look at why you should start power walking right now.
1. Improved Cardiovascular Health
Power walkers have higher heart rates, especially when they walk at a moderate to high effort. Exercise that raises your heart rate is beneficial in the treatment of heart disease and other chronic conditions such as diabetes and cancer.
Recent observational research, according to the American Cancer Society, suggests that walking more steps each day – even if you walk at a typical speed – is associated with living longer.
Because it involves more steps per minute and more engagement from your major muscle groups, power walking places a greater strain on your cardiovascular system.
2. Reduced Risks
An hour of power walking at 4.5 mph would burn the same amount of energy as a 30-minute run without the pressure on your joints. Making power walking an ideal exercise for people of all ages and fitness levels.
Power walking works the quadriceps, hamstrings, calf muscles, and hip abductors, but it also tones the shoulders, upper back, and glutes!
Power walking burns more calories and tones your muscles than a conventional stroll. It’s also an excellent core workout. The faster you use your arms while power walking, the more you may engage your complete body, putting your balance and stability to the test.
A frequent brisk walk, according to the Mayo Clinic, can help you maintain a healthy weight and decrease body fat.
3. Improved Bone Health
Power walking is also beneficial to your bones. According to new research published in the American Journal of Preventative Medicine, one hour of moderate-intensity exercise each day, such as power walking, avoids impairment in patients who have symptoms of joint issues in their lower limbs.
The bigger the advantages, the quicker, farther, and more frequently you walk!
How to Power Walk
While power walking, it is critical to maintaining appropriate form and posture. This prevents injuries and ensures you can maintain the right speed. Instead of risking rolling an ankle or hurting a knee, make sure you’re working the appropriate muscles in the right manner to convert the energy you’re generating into steps and calories burnt.
Maintaining appropriate posture when walking is always vital, but it is more crucial when power walking. Your eyes should be forward, your shoulders back, and your head should be erect. Set your attention about 20 feet ahead and don’t sag.
If you notice your posture is awry or you’re slouching forward, fix it immediately, even if it means slowing down. The better your posture, the faster you can walk and the more steps you can take.
Spend some time working on your posture since good posture helps you to move quickly and wear out less quickly.
Starting Your Routine
If you’re new to fitness or want to intensify your walks. Start softly and gradually—you’ll still get significant benefits. To get started, try this interval walking strategy. Exertion is graded on a scale of 1 to 10, with 1 representing rest and 10 representing near-breathlessness.
This simple interval session gradually builds in intensity to a peak, then eases back down.
- 5-minute warmup walk (level 5)
- 5-minute typical walk (level 6)
- 4-minute brisker than usual walk (level 7)
- 2-minute fastest possible walk (level 8)
- 4-minute brisker than usual walk (level 7)
- 5-minute typical walk (level 6)
- 5-minute cool-down walk (level 5)
Always speak to your primary care physician before starting a new exercise routine.
How Much and How Often?
The duration and intensity of any workout plan are determined by your schedule. 30 minutes of power walking three times a week is an excellent beginning point.
Walking at a constant pace might get monotonous, and it also restricts the number of calories you can burn. By raising your surplus post-exercise oxygen intake, intervals can help you burn more calories during and after your workout.
There is no incorrect technique to perform interval training. You can quicken your speed for a set number of minutes or for a set distance. Choose a distant landmark, such as a stop sign, and walk at a quicker rate where conversing becomes difficult until you reach it. Then, continue alternating between simple and difficult attempts. Alternatively, you might walk with exaggerated arm gestures, such as holding your hands high, until you arrive at the location.
Power walking hill sprints might be added as an extra challenge. Walk at a comfortable speed to a nearby hill, then walk upward at an effort that makes it difficult to converse, recover at an easy pace, and repeat. Just remember that you don’t have to go all out all at once.
Tips for Implementing a Power Walking Routine:
To get the most out of power walking, consider these tips:
- Get the right gear: Unlike running shoes, which may be slightly thicker at the heel, your shoes should have good arch support and a flat sole.
- Make sure you’re visible: Walk on a path or sidewalk where you’re safe from traffic. If you’re walking at dusk or in the dark, use reflective tape or clothing, or bring a flashlight.
- Make it fun: Walk with a friend or colleague. Walk somewhere you find beautiful and restorative. Walk while listening to music you like – just make sure you can also hear traffic sounds. Do whatever makes it fun for you!
- Know the terrain: To keep from falling, notice uneven sidewalks, tree roots, and other obstacles.
The Bottom Line
If you haven’t tried power walking or speed walking before, now is the time to attempt this low-impact, high-impact workout. This versatile workout is suitable for people of all fitness levels. The lower risks of joint degradation and injury make it more appealing to people of all ages.
If you want to remain healthy, become fit, or get back in shape, including this action in your workout routine today will be a terrific investment in your body!
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