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Articles - Health - Walk with a Goal

Walk with a Goal: To Stay Away from the Doctor’s Office

It is free; you can do it at any time and it doesn’t require being in top shape. In addition, walking improves high blood pressure, tones the muscles, has many cardiovascular benefits, and helps you get rid of some calories. So, what are you waiting for?

According to experts, walking at least 5 days a week is one of the best ways to be in good shape. It is a healthy exercise and it is easy to perform. It’s not expensive –a pair of good tennis shoes will do it- and it is free. If you don’t feel like going to the gym, here is what you can do to have great cardiovascular benefits.

Take it seriously

You need to be aware of the importance of practicing some kind of daily exercise and maintain your body active. Cardiologists tell us that a 30-minute walk every day substantially reduces the number of heart attacks. So, it is not just about losing weight or burning calories; it is much more than that because when you walk, all the muscles in your legs and arms move, so you are guarantee to be performing a complete exercise.

According to the Institute of Medical Investigations in Barcelona, if everybody would walk regularly, heart attacks will be reduced by 20%. This includes children, teenagers, young adults, adults and elderly.

Before going for a walk

Choose shoes that are comfortable and that perspire. Remember that your feet support your body weight so they need a good allied. Use shoes with flexible soles and make sure they are your size.

Always use socks to avoid blisters.

Use loose-fitting clothes that allow you to move comfortably and perspire.

It is recommended to do some warming exercises before and after your walking.

If you don’t feel like walking by yourself, invite a friend or a neighbor to go with you.

Mark yourself a route according to your goals, taking into consideration the length of the walk, the intensity, and the difficulties of the ground.

Remember that as any exercise, walking also has a technique and a period of preparation.

Let’s go!

Your abdomen and back have to be straight; this will guarantee you proper breathing.

As you walk, look 2 or 3 yards in front of you with your head and chin straight.

Move your arms forward and backwards with your elbows close to your body.

You can alternate the pace of your walking: you may walk fast during 10 minutes, slow down for other 10 minutes, and so forth.

Take your steps always in this order: heel, sole, and toes. It will help you adopt a natural posture.

Increase a little the distance you walk every day. If you walk one or two miles a day, increase it by 200 yards.

Keep yourself hydrated. Remember to drink before you are thirsty.

Great benefits

Walking improves cardiovascular capacity; therefore, it lowers the risk for cardiovascular disease and heart attacks.

It tones the muscles and stimulates basal metabolism.

Walking 30 minutes burns about 150 to 300 calories.

It lowers LDL, the “bad” cholesterol and increases HDL, the “good” one.

It lowers the risk of osteoporosis.

It strengthens the leg muscles.

People who exercise regularly and have a good physical resistance enjoy better health than those who rarely practice any sport.

And keep in mind that low intensity exercise, but constant, can have the same results than the one done with higher intensity.

Final thought
Walking is the best pill you can take. Not only it improves and maintains health but may prevent many chronic illnesses. In addition, it has no side effects. So, what are you waiting for to start your daily walk?

About the Author
Emilia Klapp has a degree in Nutrition Science and is a Registered Dietitian. With her new book, “Your Heart Needs the Mediterranean Diet”, she has helped many people just like you reduce the risk of heart disease and lose weight at the same time. For more information on the book and to receive a FREE especial report on the “Top 10 Mediterranean Curative Ingredients” go to:

Creation date : 15/07/2008 @ 10:51
Last update : 27/07/2010 @ 11:23
Category : Articles - Health
Page read 6786 times

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