Walking: How to Make it a Full-Body Workout
by Haley Cooke | June, 30, 2021
I am often asked… Is walking really doing anything for me though? YES – 100% – YES! If walking is the only thing you are doing for your exercise – KEEP DOING IT! Always remember something is better than nothing.
Now, if you like walking and are looking to burn more calories, tone muscle, or just intensify your walking routine – try out some of these suggestions to transform your walk into a full-body workout!
Step Up Your Pace – Most people walk about 2-3 mph, which averages to be a 20 minute mile. If you are looking for weight loss… work to get to 4 mph. This means a 15 minute mile! If you increase your speed from 3 mph to 4 mph, you’ll burn around 1/3 more calories!
Add a Light Jog – Adding a 1 to 2 minute jog during your walk will add some intensity and variety to your workout, plus you’ll burn more calories!
Walk on a Incline – An incline can challenge your body and burn more calories than walking on a flat surface. It also can work your legs, glutes, and calves differently. This is more effective for toning and building muscle. If you are generally an outside walker, look for a route that offers an incline for your next walk.
Use Weights – Using free weights during your walk will help tone your arms and burn more calories. Whether you use light dumbbells in your hands or light ankle weights – you will enhance your results either way!
Grab a Buddy – Everyone loves good company (human or animal). 🙂 Find a good buddy to walk with to help you keep a good pace and provide a little more fun to your walk.
Use Intervals – Interval training is highly effective for weight loss. You can add speed intervals or incline intervals into your walk. Whether the interval includes faster walking or a light jog, start small with 30 sec to 1 min in the beginning phase.
Use Your Muscles – Walking is great for your legs, but it can also help you get a flatter stomach and firmer glutes. Focus on using those target muscles while you walk. Tighten your glutes and gently draw in your waist while you walk.
Add in Exercise Moves – Whether you are pumping your arms or striding out your legs, add some variety to your standard walk. Consider arm exercises with those hand weights or drop and do 10 pushups after every 10 minutes of walking!
REPEAT after me: Something is better than nothing.
Suggestion: Start working toward a cumulative 150 minutes a week of exercise. 20 minutes is better than 0 minutes. 65 minutes is better than 20 minutes. Everyone starts somewhere… increase where YOU are and don’t worry about anyone else. 🙂
Studies show that walking for at least 30 minutes a day, five times a week will reward you with some major health benefits and help keep your weight in check.
Let’s get walking!