Why EVERYONE Should Be Walking (from Morbidly Obese to Meathead)
It doesn’t matter if you’re obese, an athlete or an average Joe – you should be walking.
Not only is walking one of the most effective ways to lose fat, walking is a POWERFUL tool for increasing your quality of life – lose fat, increase knowledge, maintain muscle mass, reduce stress, increase mobility and promote recovery, all with a simple stroll.
This is a must read, but more importantly – a must do.
If you want to burn fat, the best time to walk is in the morning. The theory begin that upon awakening you have depleted glycogen stores (low in carbs) therefore your body will turn to your fat stores for energy. I agree with this premise and walking is the perfect form of exercise for it. I also find it gets people energized and level headed for the day ahead. Frequency: 4-7 times a week.
How long, how hard?
The goal is to perform a brisk walk, maintain an intensity which would allow you to maintain a conversation but at the same time gets you a bit hot and sweaty. It’s difficult to prescribe a precise duration to everyone, though it should sit between the 10-60minute mark. Closer 10 minutes if you’re morbidly obese and closer to 60minutes if you’re a very fit individual looking to lean up or promote recovery.
1. Walking burns A LOT of fat, without burning muscle:
Walking is a form of low intensity exercise, which generally means you burn a higher percentage of fat while you are participating in it than any other type of activity.
So bro’s, to lose fat without burning muscle there are two options when it comes to cardio:
- High intensity cardio (sprint)
- Very low intensity cardio (walk)
It’s the midrange stuff that presents a problem for most people. When you go for a “jog” or hop on a cardio machine for 30-40minutes you will get all of the negatives effects associated with cardio (increased cortisol, muscle loss, overuse injuries, decreased power output and all other stuff bro’s have nightmares about). Walking doesn’t cause these negative effects, which is why it has been so popular with natural bodybuilders over the years, and as you’ll find out in the next point, it’s not always a good idea to sprint.
2. Walking doesn’t increase stress on the body:
This one is for the two extremes – individuals suffering from obesity and athletes. Why?
Obese folks already have excessive amounts of pressure being applied through their joints; running is a TERRIBLE option for these individuals. Walking will burn massive amounts of fat, as you’re effectively using your heavy frame as a training implement. So, stick with walking everyday – you’ll be blown away by the results!
Over to the other side, athletes spend a huge amount of time breaking down their body – smashing into people, lifting heavy weights, running and jumping… to say adding more stress to your body isn’t a good idea is an understatement, balance your yin and yang! A perfect segue to my next couple of points…
3. Walking aids recovery:
Walking promotes blood flow, which has been shown to be very important in helping recover from injuries and heavy training sessions. Some believe that walking also has a small spinal flossing effect that helps the nerves align optimally and thus transfer their electrical impulses in an optimal way. Though this is all speculation, one thing I do know is it gets you moving and out of your chair, which can really help loosen those chronically tight hips and help reduce back pain.
4. Walking reduces stress and increases intelligence:
Walking can be a powerful way to escape the chronic stress of life and get some quiet time, to collect your thoughts and ponder your troubles. Walking is also a great time to sink into a great audiobook or podcast, and get your learn on! I’m currently listening to Brian Tracy’s audiobook – No Excuses! It’s a great way to start my day, inspires new ideas and increases my focus and motivation.
Sure, this is not ground-breaking information but it’s extremely effective information, which is too often discarded and overlooked. Everyone could really benefit from slipping on those shoes and going for a stroll. I honestly believe this is one of the best lifestyle changes you can make, give it a go and you’ll see more than just your body change shape.
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