by Matt Weik
Whether you’re just starting your fitness journey or simply looking for ways to improve your weight loss results, you may find that walking is your best option. This article is all about enhancing your ability to burn fat through five specific walking tips.
There seems to be two sides of the debate when it comes to walking. One side thinks that walking doesn’t burn many calories, and the other side that thinks it’s a great cardio option. The truth is, walking is a fantastic way to burn calories and stay active.
Those just starting out may not be able to jog or run due to their fitness level — which is why walking is so important. Even someone who lives an active lifestyle can benefit from walking. And the walking tips we are going to get into below will help you take your walks to new heights and ignite your fat-burning potential.
Let’s dive into five walking tips you can start implementing into your program to help amplify your weight loss and fat burning.
1. Tackle the Hills
If you want to take your walks to the next level, try hitting the hills. Walking on a flat surface is great for those just starting out or who have limitations to the type of movements and form of cardio they can do. However, finding a hilly terrain is one of the great walking tips you can utilize in order to help burn more calories than you would walking on a flat surface.
By hitting the hills, you’ll find your heart rate goes up — even if you’re walking at the same pace you were on flat terrain. If you have some hilly roads around your neighborhood or even in your backyard, use it. If not, and you like the great outdoors, consider taking a hike where there is elevation change.
Worst case scenario, if you don’t have any hills around you, walk up and down the stairs at your house to mimic hills.
2. Increase the Intensity
Next on our list of walking tips is your intensity. It seems so simple, but there are many people who sandbag their workouts and only go through the motions — expecting to see weight loss or changes in fat loss. Unfortunately, if you’re doing cardio (such as walking) and just cruising through without any intensity, your results will be minimal at best.
How exactly can you increase the intensity and leverage this as one of your effective walking tips? It’s quite simple. You can increase the pace, walk forward and in reverse, and even utilize intervals of slow and fast-paced walking. These walking tips may even help get you through your walk without getting bored. Keeping things fresh and exciting is a great way to adhere to your workout program.
3. Throw in Some Various Exercises
One of the best walking tips is hitting a park that has a path/trail along with various pieces of outdoor workout equipment along the way. This includes pull-up bars, dips for chest and triceps, and more. Walk from one station to the next throughout the park. You’re essentially killing two birds with one stone by including both cardio and resistance training during your walk.
No outdoor equipment around? No problem. During your walk, you can implement various exercises such as bodyweight squats, walking lunges, squat jumps, push-ups, and more to help increase your caloric burn.
4. Pump Those Arms
Want to burn around 10% more calories during your walks? Simply pump your arms to increase the intensity and elevate your heart rate.
You can involve your arms and upper body during your walk by pumping your arms back and forth with each stride. The best way to implement this is by picking up your pace slightly to a brisk walk (also called speed walking) as well as changing your stride length.
5. Walk More Throughout the Day
Last on our list of walking tips is simply walking… MORE. You don’t need to set aside 30 minutes or longer to fit in a walk and reap the benefits. It’s recommended that you engage in a minimum of 150 minutes of exercise each week. That could be walking for 30 minutes, five days a week, or breaking it down into smaller segments.
If you have 10 minutes throughout the day, you can easily walk the halls of your office, head outside for a quick walk, or use your lunch break as a means to get in a workout. It doesn’t matter how you fit in your cardio and walking, but by simply doing more of it throughout the day and week can add up quickly and allow you to burn more calories and fat.
Something else you should start doing is finding ways that you can move and walk more during your day. This can include taking the stairs versus the elevator, parking further away from the door when shopping that causes you to walk more, and even getting up to speak with a co-worker versus sending them an email or calling them. Better yet, go for walk meetings where everyone goes outdoors and walks the business campus instead of sitting in a conference room.
Over time when implementing these walking tips, you may see the number on the scale dropping and allowing you to move closer to your weight loss goal.