Walk Your Way to Weight Loss

Perhaps you may have tried all you can think of and still have trouble losing weight. Like most people, you may be familiar with all the latest home gym equipment, and all the ab trainers and the latest fad diet. But have you ever tried the simplest and most effective exercise?

Walking is often overlooked as a healthy alternative to all the other types of exercises because it seems so simple. After all, just about anybody can do it, and many people believe it does not burn as much calories as, for example, jogging. But do you know that walking has many benefits that no other exercise program can have? Some of its advantages include the following:

1. It is so easy to do that it is easy to do it consistently. Indeed, walking is not as strenuous as jogging, but the mere fact that you can keep doing it for a longer time means you will wind up enjoying greater benefits. For example, if you can only jog for ten minutes at a time before you run out of breath, walking might be a better alternative, as you can walk briskly for about half an hour at a time, resulting in a longer period of raised heart and respiratory rate. Experts indicate that the longer you keep these high, the greater calories you burn.

2. Walking allows you to practice deep breathing while exercising. Proper breathing is extremely important, as increased intake of oxygen actually helps burn more calories, too. Unfortunately, if your exercise is a little too strenuous, you might wind up panting for breath halfway through the workout. As such, walking is at an advantage for allowing you to breathe deeply as you pump your way around your walking zone.

3. It works out your entire body. Riding on an exercise bike typically works your legs, but walking means you will use nearly all the big muscles in your body. Of course, it would help if you make a habit of pumping your arms as you walk, and if you want you can even carry light weights with you, but this is usually not advisable unless you’ve already reached a threshold with your current walking routine, because bringing weights might make you tired faster.

4. It allows you to see the sights! While this may sound irrelevant to most workout enthusiasts, for the average person, a main reason why he cannot continue exercise routines is because they are boring. For example, for a person to spend an hour a day pedalling away at an exercise bike, he must have extreme dedication—or a good TV show to watch at that particular time! Working out at the gym is similar, as the presence of friends can make a world of difference in terms of motivation. But if want to exercise alone without getting bored, you can pick different walking routes each day and wind up window-shopping if you plan your route right. Of course, just make sure you don’t make any unnecessary stops that might put a damper on your workout!

5. You can even use it to run errands, making it a part of your day unlike any other exercise. For example, if you normally drive to drop off stuff at the post office a few blocks away, you can decide to walk to and from there. Of course, if your errands happen to involve meeting other people, just make sure you make necessary adjustments if you don’t want to talk to people all stinky. Perhaps you can find ways to dry up quickly, or you can bring a change of clothes and some cologne just to be sure, as the sweat may not bother you as much as it will the other person.

These are just the basic ways that walking is more fun than any other exercise while offering you plenty more benefits. And before you know it, you would’ve lost some weight and as people ask you what you did, you can shrug innocently, knowing it may not have been too much of a conscious effort, and say, “I don’t know, I just walked around!”