Want to step up your weight loss game? Start with this walking plan and keep building it as you get in shape.
Walking is a gentle, non-impact cardiovascular exercise that can help improve your fitness and health. It’s simple and safe. Plus, brisk, steady walking can give you many benefits over more vigorous exercise, like jogging.
Try This 10-Week Walking Program
You do not know where to start ? This 10-week walking program can put you on the path to better fitness and better health. The general idea of this plan is success through progressiveness. The best way to fail is to set goals too high, too soon. The daily satisfaction of having achieved the objective of the day and the peace of mind of an accessible program with clear visibility over time are, on the other hand, major assets for success.
10 week walking program
1st week: 15-minute walk, twice a week, i.e. 30 minutes per week
2nd week: 15-minute walk, 3 times a week, i.e. 45 minutes per week
3rd week: 20-minute walk, 3 times a week, i.e. 60 minutes per week
4th week: walk 25 minutes, 3 times a week, i.e. 75 minutes per week
5 & 6th week: 30-minute walk, 3 times a week, i.e. 90 minutes per week
7 & 8th week: 30-minute walk, 4 times a week, i.e. 120 minutes per week
9 & 10th week: 30-minute walk, 5 times a week, i.e. 150 minutes per week
This plan does not include the warm-up and cool-down time, i.e. 5 min before and 5-10 min after.
Tips to prevent pain and injury:
Start slow and easy
Unless you are an experienced walker, follow this schedule to give yourself several weeks to work up to 30 minutes or more five days a week.
Wear comfortable, well-fitting walking shoes, as well as loose clothing and layers to accommodate temperature changes.
Spend five to ten minutes walking slowly, or walk in place, to reduce the risk of injury.
After warming up, stretch your muscles for about five minutes before walking. Don’t stretch without warming up first.
Maintain good posture
Hold your head up, swing your arms naturally, and gently contract your stomach muscles.
Assess your intensity
If you’re so out of breath that you can’t hold a conversation, you’re probably walking too fast.
Track your progress
Track how many steps or miles you take and how long it takes, a pedometer is a great tool.
Make walking fun
Plan several different routes to vary the pleasures. Listen to your favorite music. Invite friends or family members to join you.
Stretch at the end
After the walk, relax for five to ten minutes. Walk more slowly. Stretch your calf muscles, quadriceps (upper thighs), hamstrings and back. This post-workout stretch allows your heart rate and muscles to return to normal.
Tips for staying motivated
The most important part of any exercise program is making sure you stick to it. To stay motivated, be patient and flexible. If you don’t reach your daily goal, do your best and resume your regular walking routine the next day. Remember that you will feel good after a refreshing walk.
Plan several different routes for variety and make the walk a social event, invite your friends or family to join you. Once you’ve taken that first step, you’ll be on your way to an important destination: better health.