Friday, 10 February 2012

How To Begin a Walking Program

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Starting an exercise program can be a daunting task. If you have not exercised in awhile you may not know just where you should start. Maybe you are overweight or just lack the motivation to exercise. Walking into the gym and looking at all the different machines is not any less confusing or comfortable to you. Walking is a great low impact activity that you can do just about anywhere. Walking provides many benefits.

Some benefits of Walking are:
Decreases the level of your blood pressureLowers your risk of Type 2 DiabetesWeight loss and weight managementThe production of endorphins help keep you in a better mood (Endorphins are hormones that are produced that keep you feeling happy)Keeps you staying strong and healthyIs safer on the joints than running so people of all ages can do it.It is social and a great activity to do with friends and familyA great way to take in the sites and sounds around youLowers low-density lipoprotein (LDL) This is the bad cholestrerolRaises high-density lipoprotein (HDL) This is the good cholesterol

Some people enjoy walking on a treadmill, others enjoy a stroll in the park, or by the beach. It does not really matter where you walk. What matters the most is that you do it. When first starting out it is important to remember to do what feels comfortable to you. Once you build up your stamina and your body starts adapting, then you can increase your intensity. Intensity can be increased by walking uphill, walking faster, walking farther, and adding resistance. A simple way to remember how to improve your results is called the FITT Principle. The letters stand for Frequency, Intensity, Type, and Time. Frequency, meaning how often are you going to exercise. The more frequent you exercise the more results you are going to have. Intensity, is the one variable of the FITT Principle that will bring you the greatest reward. You can increase intensity by walking faster, walking uphill, and adding resistance. If your heart is beating faster it means you have increased your intensity. Type, is what kind of exercise you choose to do. Time or duration, is how long you do the activity for. The FITT Principle is a great way to make sure you are getting a quality workout.

A simple way to track your progress is a pedometer. Pedometers are inexpensive and you can get one in any sports equipment store, Target or Walmart. They track how many steps you take. A good step goal to try to attain is 10,000 steps a day which is about 5 miles. This is a goal that you work up to. You can start at 2000 and add to your step count each week. Before you know it you will be walking 10,000 steps with ease. The best way to get started doing a walking program is to make it fun. Listening to music is a great way to enjoy your walk. Walking in a group is also a way to socialize and get exercise. Take your family with you, or walk the dog. Try walking on all kinds of different terrain. Going on hikes is great because the terrain is constantly changing. If you have a beach nearby, walking on the sand by the ocean is very relaxing. The key here is not to make it a chore, but be something enjoyable that you want to do. Walking is a great aerobic activity. There are many health benefits that come from walking. A great way to track your progress is with a pedometer. Make sure you make it fun. While walking is a great activity it is only one part of what an effective exercise program entails. Walking is an aerobic activity, but you still need resistance training, and flexibility. Make sure to incorporate those aspects along with your walking program.

Paul is a fitness enthusiast who has worked as a Personal Trainer and a Physical Education Teacher. He earned a B.S. in Kinesiology from CSUF and a Physical Education Teaching Credential as well. He also earned a National Certification as a Performance Enhancement Specialist, Corrective Exercise Specialist through NASM and is a Certified Personal Trainer. He started which focuses on all aspects of fitness, and motivation. He also is the founder of Workd Fitness Bootcamp.

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