We all know how important walking is for exercise. Not near enough people spend time walking. If your life is so busy that you don't manage to fit walking into your schedule, try to set aside one or more days of the week when you get out and walk. You'll not only feel better physically but you'll also feel better emotionally. Before you begin your weekly walking, make sure you know what you have planned and try to stick with it. Too many people try to start out with big plans of walking a great distance and are only setting themselves up for failure.
Starting off Slow is Vital
The most important thing is to start off slow. If you've been walking for quite awhile, you can continue doing what you've been doing all along. If you're new to walking or are getting back to it after a long break, start off slow. Regardless of how much pressure you're getting from office co-workers about that 5K walkathon this weekend, you're not ready for that yet! When you first begin walking for the first time, don't walk any more than what makes you comfortable.
When you start to feel discomfort, it's time to turn around and come home. Don't wait until you're already uncomfortable - keep in mind that you still have to walk back home. Even if your first walk is only ten minutes, walk at a pace and duration that's right for you. If you're walking for exercise, make sure you use a proper technique, which means good body movements and, more importantly, good posture.
Walking has many good health benefits, especially for your heart. You may want to measure the intensity of your walking by keeping track of your heart rate. Many dedicated walkers wear an electronic device that keeps track of it for them. Even if you're only walking for short distances, you're still doing your body good. Try to set goals for yourself where you increase your intensity a little each day as well as the distance or time you spend walking.
The important thing with goals is to be realistic. Don't set a goal so high that you're only setting yourself up for failure. But, set some sort of goal that you know is realistic and work towards meeting that goal. Walking is wonderful but the one about walking is that if you stop walking regularly, you're going to have to go back to the "starting slow" routine every time you decide to start walking again. So, decide what a good goal is for you, start walking and have fun! If you happen to have a dog, they'll love joining you!
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