While we might already be aware of the benefits of walking, there’s often areas that we might overlook, or elements of our daily lives that we may never even realise are improving and getting better as you walk more.
Walking is an ideal entry point for those who are seeking to get active, but don’t know where to start. And with so many health benefits to walking, it’s a perfect place to start for those looking to improve both their physical and mental health.
OriGym’s complete overview of the myriad health benefits of walking explores what you can achieve through this simple form of cardio exercise, and where you’ll start to see improvements in a range of areas.
- Is Walking Good For You?
- The Health Benefits of Walking
- How To Start Walking For Fitness
- Frequently Asked Questions
- Our Conclusions
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Written by Professional S & C Coaches
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Is Walking Good For You?
The simple answer to this question is that walking benefits our physical and mental health massively. While walking for fitness is a frequently forgotten about form of exercise, the health benefits of walking shouldn’t be ignored.
You might have even asked yourself, is walking exercise? Something you do all the time might not necessarily feel beneficial, but the advantages of walking become much more important when you learn it’s a great form of aerobic exercise.
Aerobic activities aim to work your muscles and propel your lungs and heart to greater heights. Of course, the quicker you walk, the more intense your exercise will be. Learn more in our complete guide to the benefits of aerobic and cardio exercise.
But don’t worry, walking at a steady pace for 30 minutes, 5 days a week is a low-impact way to work out. Walking to get fit doesn’t mean you have to cover a mile a day, nor does it mean you need to complete high intensity power walks through the park.
Although running is a more challenging training choice, the health benefits of walking are just as important. If you’re someone with joint problems, fitness walking is an excellent way to minimise the strain on your knees and ankles while still promoting weight loss.
It also has countless benefits for your mental health. Like us, have you ever had one of those days where everything seems distracting? You sit staring at a blank laptop screen, waiting for the emails to read themselves.
Well, walking to keep fit not only improves your health, but is a fantastic way to bring mental clarity. You’ll feel alert, energetic, and more than ready to take on the day.
So, let’s get started: why is walking good for you?
The Health Benefits of Walking
#1 - Burns Calories
Whether your fitness goal is to lose or maintain your current weight, balancing calorie intake with the benefits of regular exercise is an excellent way to facilitate, and maintain, that weight loss.
From a more calorie-focused perspective, it’s long been established that walking 1.6 kilometers (equivalent to around 1 mile) is said to burn 100 calories! Covering this distance averages out at around 2,000 steps.
Or, if you’re focusing specifically on more tangible weight loss, and your goal is to lose 1 pound a week, you’d have to walk around 3,500 steps per day.
If you’re someone who works out regularly, though, walking 500 steps a day would set you on track for losing 1 pound a week. Or, if you like weekends off, simply walk a little further on some days to meet the same goal.
No matter how you structure your time, walking benefits any weight loss journey while being a convenient exercise to slip into a busy schedule. It’s often an ideal way for exercise beginners to get started.
If you’re a complete beginner, though, we’ve compiled a complete exploration of the best gym machines to get you started.
However, we know how easy it can be to overdo it. Oftentimes, a willingness to get up and going can mean you start off too intensely. It’s hugely important to pace yourself, and only go for what you know you’re capable of. You don’t need to test the limits of your body to feel like you’ve completed a fulfilling exercise routine.
#2 - Boosts Your Energy
While many of us might reach for a cup of black coffee for its benefits in the morning, it’s actually more beneficial to go for a short walk. Let us explain
Some benefits of walking everyday cannot be seen but are felt over time. Walking to keep fit helps an increased flow of oxygen surge through the body. This aids the production of hormones that aid in increasing your metabolism and keeping you alert.
But that’s not all! Regularly walking to get fit makes your body more adept at burning your stores of fat and sugar. One of many health benefits of walking is that it regulates your blood sugar levels and prevents your energy from plateauing.
Moreover, walking benefits your endorphins by releasing the ‘feel-good’ hormone. This not only diminishes your perception of pain but increases your energy levels. The walking health benefits have never been so clear!
It’s no surprise then, that research has shown a connection between low to moderate exercise and a feeling of increased energy. A 2008 study found that, among adults with fatigue syndromes, low-intensity activities (such as walking or slow bike rides) had incredibly beneficial effects on feelings of energy.
If you’re trying to reduce your caffeine intake or simply find the time to exercise, perhaps try replacing your morning cup of coffee with a brisk walk. Fitness walking might be the method for you if you’re searching for elevated energy levels.
#3 - Extends Your Life
It’s understandable to wonder ‘is walking good for you?’ when it’s something we do without much thought. But after digging deep into the research, you start to really see how the health benefits of walking may extend your life.
A recent study investigated the connection between the impact of walking on life expectancy. Their results showed that from the age of 40, participants who walked for more than one hour a day had a longer life expectancy than those who walked less than an hour.
Not only that, but as you walk more, your body becomes more accustomed to the pressures that low-intensity exercise can place upon it, and you’re therefore more capable of completing more. You might even choose to up your speed as you become more confident, and experience the mental health benefits of running.
Regular exercise, and particularly cardiovascular workouts like walking, also leads to a much lower risk of cardiovascular illness or issues. It’s for this reason that the benefits of walking every day are not just of short-term importance. Integrating regular walking into your routine can be a long-term plan for maintaining your health.
#4 - Boosts Your Mental Health
While we all love to look good, feeling good is just as important. Without a solid sense of wellbeing, developing a walking routine may prove difficult and hard to keep up with. If you’ve ever wondered, “is walking good for you in regard to mental health?”, then you’ll be pleased to know it is.
For most people, finishing any form of exercise leaves you with a great sense of pride and happiness. Even if you’re not a big fan of physical activity, you’ll feel good that you got through it without quitting.
Like many other moderate intensity exercises, walking to get fit has been proven to be incredibly beneficial for mental health, as well as physical health. Even short walks go a long way towards improving your overall mood.
The benefits of walking on your mental health also extend to anxiety. The ‘feel-good’ hormone we mentioned earlier (serotonin) is responsible for releasing tension in the body and increasing your mental energy.
Moreover, walking to keep fit can allow you to concentrate on some of the less noticeable sensations of exercise that might be overlooked. By concentrating on your breath, the rhythm of your feet or how the sun feels on your skin, you’ll be on your way to mindfulness in no time.
If you’re seeking to excel in mindfulness, though, explore our complete selection of the benefits of meditation and mindfulness.
#5 - Improves Function Of The Immune System
While it can’t completely eliminate your risk of illness, one of the hidden health benefits of walking is that it can help to boost your immune system, and how it can deal with foreign microbes and viruses that enter the body.
Exercise causes changes in your antibodies and white blood cells, increasing the amount that circulates through your body. These cells are our immune system's way of fighting off diseases, to keep us healthy.
The benefits of walking every day (especially in conjunction with the right immunity boosting foods) are that these fighting cells move through our blood quicker. Walking to get fit becomes a way to both aesthetically and internally improve your body.
Through fitness walking, you unknowingly train your white blood cells to detect illnesses earlier than they did before. Starting to walk yourself fit can help flush bacteria from your airways and lungs that could cause various illnesses, like cold or flu.
Aside from touching contaminated surfaces or inhaling bacteria, stress is also a huge contributor towards our overall health, both mental and physically. One of the less immediately apparent health benefits of walking is that it can help alleviate these stressful feelings.
Some hormones, such as cortisol, can increase your risk of illness. Lowering stress is an important way to benefit your overall health and helps to clarify the answer to “why is walking good exercise?”.
#6 - Alleviates Joint Pain
It’s common to ask yourself, why would I choose walking as my exercise when there are much quicker ways to get in shape? While high-impact sports, such as running and gymnastics, do burn calories quicker, they can also put a lot of stress on your joints.
One of the most important walking benefits is how positively low-impact sports can affect your body. Have you ever had trouble with knee or ankle pain? To prevent future injuries, walking benefits the cartilage that protects your joints.
The increased blood flow that is caused by exercise helps to better lubricate the joints. Simply by wandering around the neighbourhood or your local park, you can reap the benefits of walking every day.
If you’re not too fond of your surroundings and prefer to be in a gym, we’ve got just the tip. You can walk yourself fit by getting on the treadmill - read more in OriGym’s comprehensive report on the benefits of treadmill running.
Looking for a challenge? To decrease any stiffness or pain in your joints, try using the incline feature on your treadmill. Increasing the incline can significantly improve your recovery time, and even help mitigate against the pain that comes with sore or inflamed joints.
Joint diseases, such as arthritis and osteoarthritis, are common conditions that cause swelling, pain and a decreased range of motion. While you may think that walking would exacerbate these issues, they actually go a long way towards helping with these persistent aches and pains.
#7 - Strengthens Your Heart
If you’re someone who finds themselves wondering ‘is walking a good exercise for your heart?’ then you’ll be pleased to know, it is. In fact, the internal health benefits of walking everyday have been studied in detail.
A comprehensive study found that brisk walking to keep fit (particularly in conjunction with regularly exercising) are two substantial ways you can reduce your risk of heart disease. We’d add eating healthily to this, too - learn more on its importance with our complete guide to the benefits of healthy eating.
Walking for fitness not only limits the risk of heart disease. It also decreases your blood pressure and improves the circulation of blood throughout your entire body. Just like all your muscles, the heart is an extremely strong muscle that must be challenged.
To maintain its maximum health, walking for fitness is an excellent way to put your heart through its paces. Another considerable walking health benefit is its effect on your cholesterol.
Walking for thirty minutes a few days a week also positively affects your cholesterol levels, increasing your levels of HDL (good cholesterol) and lowering levels of LDL (bad cholesterol).
#8 - Reduces Body Fat
Oftentimes, one of the most pressing questions people ask is “‘is walking an exercise that can support my weight loss journey?” Not only can walking for fitness help you lose weight, but it can also significantly reduce your body fat.
While there are multiple different types of body fat, the benefits of walking everyday particularly relate to belly fat. Walking is an excellent form of cardiovascular conditioning, whereby your heart rate and breathing increase. If you want to reduce body fat, it’s vital that your muscles work to burn fat.
Walking at a brisk pace is the perfect way to do this - around 2.5 to 3.5 miles an hour will ensure that you’re walking at an intensity moderate enough for weight loss. Even better, is that there’s a way to test if you’re hitting this pace.
You should be able to talk, but not sing. In fact, this moderate level of intensity should help you reach what is called ‘the fat-burning zone.’ - this is where you’ll be using 50-70% of your maximum heart rate, and the benefits of walking will allow you to burn visceral body fat.
This is fat that’s harmful to the body and connected with a higher risk of some cancers, diabetes, and insulin issues. But by walking for 30 minutes a day, you can spur your body to use its fat reserves, thereby reducing your levels of visceral fat.
It’s hard to answer ‘‘is walking a good exercise for me?’ if you haven’t seen results before. But with consistency and motivation, you’ll start to see improvement in no time.
#9 - Lowers Blood Sugar
Some walking health benefits you might not have known involve its effect on your blood sugar levels. Also known as glucose, it is absorbed by eating carbohydrates like whole grains, potatoes and healthy nuts. So, why is walking good for you when managing sugar levels?
With brisk walking, it’s likely your breathing will become heavier. As this happens, the heart beats faster and forces your muscles to use glucose. Getting involved in moderate exercise, like fitness walking, will gradually help to lower the glucose entering your bloodstream.
If you’re still wondering ‘what are the benefits of walking?’ look no further. As well as helping you lose weight, walking to get fit can also manage health conditions, such as diabetes.
The benefits of walking are bountiful, but the regulation of blood sugars is extremely important to your overall health. Having low blood pressure can put you at risk of injury from falls, fainting and dizziness.
On the other hand, hyperglycemia (high blood pressure) is associated with diabetes and without management, can put you at risk of vision issues, vomiting and heart disease. Walking can significantly ease these issues, and help to mitigate against the symptoms you might face.
So, get a head-start on your health! Walk yourself fit and manage your blood sugar with a stroll around the neighborhood.
#10 - Tones Your Legs
Walking to get fit is an endurance exercise that is great for toning leg muscles. Most assume that building muscle strength and weight loss do not go together. In actuality, walking for fitness can tone your muscles by lessening body fat.
Toning up means engaging in exercises that result in more defined muscles. These walking health benefits are certainly underrated when deciding if you want to up your step count.
But if you’re looking to start trimming the fat around your thighs or calves, brisk fitness walking is the way to begin. It’s not only a great exercise that can be easily incorporated into your everyday routine, walking to keep fit is also one of the safest, low-impact activities that can help to slim and tone your legs.
Looking for tips that will maximise the benefits of walking? If you’re looking to tone your thighs, try increasing the incline on your treadmill (check out our complete list for the best treadmills).
Alternatively, you might opt to go outdoors, and try walking or even running uphill, or explore the trails around your local area.
While travelling uphill, you’ll be maximising the benefits that walking has on your fat burning. You can also target the hamstrings at the back of your thigh by simply lifting your legs a little more.
When taking a step forward, try stretching your other leg straight and up behind you. Contracting these muscles can help define the hamstrings while firming up the glutes, two key components of your leg muscle definition.
#11 - Stimulates Your Digestive System
Like all of us, it’s possible you’ve experienced some digestive issues in the past. When it comes to these stomach and intestinal problems, the health benefits of walking can have profound effects.
The digestive system itself is made up of several organs. Your stomach, small intestine and large intestine are key to helping your body absorb the nutrients it needs to stay healthy. So, is walking an exercise that can manage digestive problems?
Simple answer: fitness walking is great for your stomach! Improving your digestive system can sometimes be a matter of reducing stress levels and improving your diet. But many people don’t know what the health benefits of walking can have on mobilizing your digestion.
Regular bowel movements are key to preventing issues like bloating or constipation. In fact, a recent study from 2021 uncovered the health benefits of walking every day. Two sets of patients, both with and without digestive disorders, were told to walk only 20 minutes per day.
What they found was yet another way walking to get fit can improve your gut health. They recorded improved levels of gut function and metabolism during and up to 4 hours after exercise. For more advice on boosting your metabolic rate, check out OriGym’s comprehensive list of the best foods for the metabolism.
The benefits of walking truly are an excellent way to reduce the symptoms of digestive disorders. Aid food on its journey through your stomach by lacing up those walking shoes.
#12 - Improves Your Aerobic Capacity
Cardio training, also known as aerobic fitness, is the prime way to improve the amount of oxygen you consume during exercise. And for those just beginning their fitness walking journey, it’s perfectly normal to begin at a slower pace.
The advantages of walking involve how convenient it is to perform as a low-intensity exercise. However, for aerobic exercises to be most beneficial, moderate-intensity walking is the way to go.
Assuming a more powerful fitness walking pace will help increase your endurance over time. So you’ll be able to walk to fitness, for longer. Enhancing your aerobic capacity will soon allow you to reap the copious other health benefits of walking.
For example, if you’re looking to use fitness walking to build your strength, improving your aerobic capacity is one way to do this. Resistance training often puts strain on the muscles and can lead to a longer recovery time between sessions.
However, the benefit that walking has on your lungs, heart and muscles will aid in repairing your body quicker. This is because walking for aerobic health allows oxygen, blood, vitamins for energy, and the nutrients that heal you, to reach your muscles quicker.
Or, if you’re looking to become more flexible, walking to get fit can help. It not only aids recovery and improves your cardiovascular system but gives more freedom of movement to oxygenated blood. With your muscles warmed up and range of motion increased, you’ll be on your way to doing the splits in no time.
Now that you know that walking to keep fit heals your body from the inside out, perhaps you’re ready to take the next step in your journey. While the benefits of walking are incredibly effective, the best way to take advantage of them is to try it.
#13 - Improves Your Balance
Balance is an essential part of fitness. Without being able to control the body’s position, simple everyday tasks, like rising from your seat or bending over, would become incredibly difficult. In fact, some overlooked benefits of walking include its ability to improve your posture and lower body strength.
These two components are key to maintaining a good sense of proprioception. This essentially means how aware you are of your body, and how you coordinate your limbs. To better gauge this, try out some walking exercises that can show you how.
During your daily walk, try stepping heel to toe. If you’re outside, make sure to clear the path in front of you to avoid tripping. Lift your gaze upwards and keep your arms extended from your sides to add that extra bit of balance.
Once you’ve done this, begin to walk by placing the heel of your leading foot in front of the toes of the other. With this walking exercise, you might sense a swaying motion, and that’s perfectly normal. This exercise uses fitness walking to test your balance response, as well as helping you experience the benefits of good posture.
There is also the question ‘is walking an exercise that can help my posture?’ The answer to this ties directly into your balance and posture - walking to keep fit requires correct form, so that you don’t increase your risk of injury.
The hip abductor muscles in particular have been pinpointed as critical to supporting balance.. So, if you’re struggling to see the benefits of walking, remember that it is a great way to improve your balance and posture without doing anything complicated!
#14 - Improves Bone Density
Believe it or not, all forms of exercise are wonderful for improving bone health. While we’ll gain beneficial nutrients like calcium, and ideal vitamins for fatigue like Vitamin D, from our diet, enjoying the benefits of walking is the perfect way to compound these advantages.
A balanced diet, alongside regular, moderate intensity walking are both effective ways of reducing the risk of bone-weakening health conditions, like osteoporosis and arthritis.
But these things alone do not provide you with the same level of protection that regular physical exercise does. Daily attempts to walk yourself fit have more impact on your bone health than perhaps you knew.
Have you ever considered that walking forces your legs and feet to bear the weight of your body? As a result, your bones become stronger because they have to work harder. Moderate exercise, like brisk walking to keep fit, are a more effective way to strengthen your bone density than slower walks.
If you’re looking for a way to strengthen your weight-bearing form of walking further, it could be a good idea to incorporate other elements. Try experimenting with body-weight exercises that you can incorporate into your walking routine. Put a brief hold on your outside stroll to perform lunges, squats, or push-ups in a scenic area.
If you’re comfortable with upping your intensity level, these are great ways to reap the health benefits of walking alongside resistance training. With this combination, gravity piles pressure onto your bones and lets the body know it's time to add more tissue.
Bone is a living tissue that, with increased strength, can enhance the effectiveness of other walking health benefits. Whether balance, muscle strength or calorie burning, improving your bone health through walking to keep fit is a practical way to maintain your overall health.
#15 - Helps You Think Creatively
With creative pursuits (like painting or writing), it can be easy to lose your creative spark, or feel demotivated at a lack of progress or ideas. Exercise, and in particular walking, can significantly benefit us with our creative hobbies.
In recent years, we have come to see walking as an exercise for both the brain and mind. Therefore, regular fitness walking is recommended as a way to improve both cognition and memory. Interestingly, this is thought to be a result of increased oxygen flowing towards the brain.
The health benefits of walking are perfect for those wanting to refresh their brain whilst also protecting it. A recent study, analysing whether a walk leads to more creative thinking than staying seated, discovered a significant link between our creative processes and walking.
So, when we’re wondering “is walking a stimulating exercise for the brain?”, there’s significant evidence that points towards an irrefutable connection between walking and creativity
It’s also important to note that, on a more concrete level, walking outdoors can provide us with natural inspiration. Using trails that are local to you, or venturing further afield for a walk in the countryside, is an ideal way to discover your next landscape or setting.
Enjoying this article so far? Here are 3 more we’ve handpicked for you
How To Start Walking For Fitness
#1 - Find Some Comfortable Shoes
We believe that there is nothing worse than shoes that tear your feet to shreds. How are you supposed to walk yourself fit, covered in blisters? Exactly, you can’t! The first step to fitness walking is finding the right pair of shoes for you.
Below, we’ve listed our four best tips when it comes to shopping around. Looking after your feet is key to longevity and enjoyment.
Walking Shoes or Walking Boots?
To decide whether you want trainers or boots, there are a few things to assess. Firstly, think about the weather - if you’re beginning your fitness walking journey in summer, walking shoes are more appropriate. They’ll be more lightweight, breathable and provide you with maximum comfort.
But if you’re looking for improved ankle support, walking boots offer you the best protection. They’re also better for those trekking up hills. Heavy boots on flat paths can add weight to your feet and make walking more strenuous than it needs to be. Explore more in our complete buyer’s guide to men’s walking boots.
Unsurprisingly, the weather conditions and terrain of your walks are important to consider. We’ve explored this topic in more detail in our complete report on running in the rain, but we’ll outline the key details below.
Walking shoes that don’t have a waterproof lining are great for keeping the feet chilled in hot environments. It’s wise to consider this option for summertime and decide if it's an investment you won’t regret in winter.
However, if you live somewhere that’s shrouded in rainfall, waterproof lining will be essential. They’ll keep your feet from getting damp and make your walking journey more enjoyable. But because of this, they may be heavier than your average shoe.
The quality of a walking shoe’s outsole is what determines performance ability. For example, walking shoes are typically made from rubber, with grips (also known as ‘lugs) that determine how much contact your foot makes with the ground.
Outsoles are made differently to accommodate for varying conditions. For example, walking shoes with deeper grooves will be more durable in muddy environments. They’ll prevent you from slipping and minimise cleaning, as they’ll get rid of sludge easier.
#2 - Have Good Fitness Walking Posture
Good technique is the key to maximising the health benefits of walking. If you walk to get fit regularly, then bad form is a gateway to a number of problems, including Misalignment, back stress, and fatigue.
That’s why it’s important to make sure before you start, you know what it means to have a good walking technique and why it’s so crucial. Walking is not just a matter of moving the legs - walking for fitness is a form of exercise that requires full body cooperation, with each aspect needing attention.
Ensure that your head is up, your spine is elongated, and shoulders are back. This is a great place to start. By doing this, you’ll be avoiding unnecessary strain on your muscles. Slouching can be damaging to your shoulders and gazing down will only cause tension in your neck.
If you’re already experiencing issues with your neck and shoulders, check out OriGym’s complete guide to shoulder stretches, and address your pain at its root cause.
Stepping from heel to toe is not only good posture, but a great way to put your centre of gravity to the test. Good walking technique will see your heel hit the ground first, followed by your toes. This will give you the most stability, as opposed to taking flat-footed steps.
If you’re looking to work on your abs while walking to fitness, it’s an ideal opportunity. Good walking technique requires an engaged core to inhibit the stress your lower back faces. You’ll find yourself moving with more dexterity and learning to keep your hips level.
So, with good walking technique comes numerous benefits. You’ll be treating your muscles with the care they deserve, improving blood circulation and reducing your risk of injury.
#3 - Walking To Fitness Requires Goals
Sometimes, when we have a particularly busy day, it can be difficult to find the motivation to go walking. When these days come, you might feel disheartened when you can’t embark on your daily walk. But it doesn’t mean that you’re not on track. Our best piece of advice is that sticking to your goals is more than a strict routine.
In fact, determination varies from person to person. Walking for fitness purposes isn’t a high-intensity sport, like running. It’s dependent on individual pace and visible progress might be slower. That’s not only perfectly normal, but a part of what makes your journey unique to you.
Focusing on how far you’ve come, rather than where you’re not, is a great way to stick to your goals. It’s far too easy to fixate on perfection, so we recommend celebrating your milestones. If you’ve walked 1,000 steps more than yesterday, think of it as being 1,000 steps closer to your goal.
When boredom does strike, it’s time to switch things up. If you’re someone who usually prefers to walk solo, bring a friend! There’s nothing better than a partnership where you support and remind each other of your achievements, and there’s a great many benefits to group exercise.
In the infancy of your walking journey, you might not even be sure what your goals are. We recommend making a list of all the things you want to achieve from fitness walking in a dedicated fitness journal, and then working out how to get there.
Long-term goals of improving your endurance or short-term goals like increasing your step count can be placed on a mood board, written down or even just visualised.
Frequently Asked Questions
How Soon Will I See Results From Walking To Get Fit?
Answering this question is entirely dependent on your fitness goals. It’s equally dependent on who you are as a person. To whittle down the possibilities, we’ve listed some goals you may have for fitness walking and the time it could take to achieve them.
If your walking goal is to improve your overall mood, and start to adopt a more positive mindset, this might not take as long as you think.
A recent study set out to discover how movement, like walking, is inextricably linked to positive emotions, because of more primal or rudimentary instincts that relate to finding food or riches.
After only 12 minutes, the participants felt a mood-enhancing effect. Even from a simple stroll around their familiar settings, emotions of attentiveness and enjoyment rose, and those who participated in exercise were much happier.
Of course, this won’t be the same for everyone, but this significant study in the field found conclusive evidence of the link between mood and exercise. We’d recommend aiming to walk even a short distance per day to achieve those same results.
Better Overall Fitness
Measuring aerobic improvement is arguably more difficult. Enhancing the body’s metabolism is a matter of consistency and results will only be significant if you stick with your programme, as well as incorporating a healthy diet that contains metabolism boosting foods.
With most cardiovascular training, there is a minimum benchmark you should be hitting to see results. Assuming a brisk walking pace for 30 minutes, three to four times a week will ensure an improvement in your aerobic capacity.
And with this regularity comes results. For the vast majority of people, results will start to become more prominent within eight to twelve weeks, and you’ll notice a lessening feeling of fatigue. Soon, even the most difficult walking paths will become a breeze.
What Is An Appropriate, Daily Fitness Walking Distance?
It’s recommended that you do at least 150 minutes of moderate intensity activity a week or 75 minutes of vigorous intensity activity a week. Brisk walking is considered a moderate-intensity activity and as expected, it’s listed as a great way to meet these guidelines.
Of course, this is recommended to combat illnesses like heart disease or strokes, but it can have profound effects on your overall health, too. However, we might want to excel, and see results quicker, or build up fitness to train for a marathon.
But how much you want to walk outside of these recommendations really relies on personal goals. If you’re looking to lose weight, walking 10,000 steps per day works out as a five-mile walk.
This is not to say that if 10,000 isn’t your average, you’re unhealthy - it simply means that accomplishing this step goal will make you more likely to achieve any fitness goals you’ve set for yourself.
Depending on your comfortability, try adding anywhere between 500-1,000 steps to your daily amount per week. Over time, you’ll be hitting targets you didn’t even know were possible.
What’s The Best Time To Walk For Fitness?
The best time of day to walk is highly contested, because a lot of this decision will ultimately fall down to seasonal and personal preference, as well as how you can fit walking into your existing schedule.
While there is little research in the area, the general consensus is that the afternoon is the right balance of daylight hours and weather. However, fitting an afternoon walk into a busy work life can often be difficult, and may even be impossible, depending on your working hours.
Another option could be to start your day with a session of morning exercise, especially if you’re looking to harness the boost of energy that walking can bring. Fitness walking towards a rising sun can also make it easier to form a habit, especially if it becomes part of your morning ritual before a healthy cup of cold brew coffee.
Moreover, walking to fitness when air pollution is at its lowest can be greatly beneficial. Ensure you stretch beforehand to get your blood flowing. Alternatively, you might choose to go in the evening, or at nighttime.
Getting to see your friends after work for an evening jog can be a great way to end the day while getting your steps in. It’s also likely that your muscles are warm from a day of activity. Your safety is paramount, so we recommend a walking buddy and a sufficiently reflective hi vis running vest.
Before You Go!
Although it may seem like a lot at first, you’ll soon begin to realise how impactful the benefits of walking can be on your health. Effects like mood improvement and lower blood sugar might seem more short-term but they’ll certainly have a big impact over time.
Likewise, the long-term effect of burning calories and strengthening your bones are important to maintaining the quality of life we all look for. Best of all, fitness walking is something you can do a little more of everyday.
Or if you’re already completely confident in your cardio capabilities, then perhaps a career in fitness is your next step.
OriGym’s industry-leading personal training diploma offers the complete package, with 0% interest payment plans, expert guidance available 7 days a week, unlimited career support, and a guaranteed interview after you graduate.
Download our FREE prospectus today to learn more about what we offer, and how it could be the perfect career for you.
Written by Professional S & C Coaches
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- Puetz TW, Flowers SS, O'Connor PJ. A randomized controlled trial of the effect of aerobic exercise training on feelings of energy and fatigue in sedentary young adults with persistent fatigue. Psychother Psychosom. 2008;77(3):167-74. doi: 10.1159/000116610. Epub 2008 Feb 14. PMID: 18277063.
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