Walking is probably the best form of exercise in the world. It is a safe and effective way to become and stay fit. It helps improve the efficiency of the heart, lungs and muscles.
Walking is effective for weight reduction, relieving stress, improving muscle tone, increasing bone and joint strength and in general creating a feeling of well being.
Although it is 'just' a natural everyday activity, walking is extremely good for you. Previously dismissed as "too simple to be taken seriously" by the west, walking is now being looked upon with respect all over the world. This simple form of exercise appeals to all being convenient, inexpensive and fun to enjoy alone or with friends. It requires no special athletic skills or equipment and is probably the only form of exercise that can be performed by any age group, without any previous training, at all times and anywhere. Best of all, it's free!
BENEFITS OF BRISK WALKING
The feeling of general well being that results from regular walking is immense and has to be experienced to be believed! Brisk walking on a regular basis improves the body's ability to utilize oxygen efficiently. This results in lowering the resting heart rate and blood pressure. This in turn reduces the load on the heart, which preventing against heart attacks. A lower blood pressure also results in reducing the risk of stroke. Additionally, walking helps burn calories: muscle replaces fat, this results in weight loss. An ideal body weight has a direct bearing on the incidence of diabetes mellitus, heart disease, high blood pressure and arthritis.
- Lowers heart rate and Blood Pressure
- Lowers Cholesterol.
- Lowers Blood Sugar Level
- Opens up Blood Vessels
- Faster recovery from a heart attack
- Control of blood sugar
- Reduces Stress
HOW MUCH SHOULD I WALK?
Walking should be regular (at least 3 days per week). One should walk briskly for at least 20 to 30 minutes at a time. A brisk walk is essential to condition the heart and the lungs. To gauge whether you are walking briskly enough it is necessary to take your pulse immediately after a brisk walk. Your aim should be to achieve your target heart rate, which can be determined by the formula:
- (220- Age) multiplied by-->
- 0.6 for beginners
- 0.7 for intermediate walkers
- 0.8 for advanced walkers
So if you are a 40 - year – old beginner, your target heart rate is : (220 – 40) x 0.6 = (180) x 0.6 = 108