POWER WALKING – PICKING UP THE PACE
You’re probably wondering what Power Walking is, and what is different from just regular old walking. Well, for one, with Power Walking you perform exaggerated walking movements. It doesn’t have a very high impact on your feet. Secondly, you do it very fast without running. So, it’s like running except you don’t pound your joints as you do with running.
Finally, it’s a fun, doctor-recommended form of exercise that almost anyone can do no matter their physical condition at the time. Within a short period of time from when you start power walking, you’ll start looking better and feeling better.
Basically, in order to “Power Walk,” you simply walk the way you normally do, except you need to exaggerate every move. Lift your knees up a little higher, push your arms back and forth as if you need them to propel you, keep your spine straight, squeeze your glutes, and hold your stomach in and walk quickly.
It looks a little funny, but it’s a great way to get fit. It’s easier on your joints than jogging, but burns about the same amount of calories. Moving your arms back and forth causes your heart rate to go up higher than if you put them down to your side. Lifting your knees causes your body to work a little harder.
When you power walk, the point is to make every single movement burn as many calories as possible. That’s why you walk a little faster, move your arms back and forth a little higher and faster – to take advantage of the efficiency of your own body to get healthy and lose weight.
BENEFITS OF POWER WALKING
Funny looking or not, power walking is a fun way to get your heart rate up, build muscle, and burn fat. There are many benefits to power walking that you may not have considered.
• Help Manage Your Weight – When you burn more calories you can lose more weight. Adding power walking to your day will make all the difference in whether or not your diet works.
• Improve Your Heart Health – Keeping your heart rate up will help you improve your cardiovascular health. Plus it will help you burn more calories which will help you get rid of dangerous stomach fat that is related to stroke and heart attacks.
• Lower Your Stress Levels – Exercising helps you keep your stress down. Power walking will lower stress levels so much because it’s also fun since it looks so silly and is so easy to do.
• It’s Easy To Do – With power walking, you can get a great workout without having to do anything special. All you’re doing is walking. No special equipment or skill needed.
• No Special Equipment Needed – Other than a good pair of walking shoes and comfortable clothing you don’t need to go out and spend a lot of money on equipment.
• Any Age Group Can Do It – If you can walk, you can power walk. You don’t need to be fit to start. It’s a great type of exercise for someone who is not yet fit to start with.
• Fun to do alone or With a Group – Power walking can be done alone, or with a group. Since all age groups can do it, you can get started power walking with your family.
• Improve Your Mood – Endorphins help you feel good and you will produce a lot when you start power walking. Try interval training for an even bigger metabolic boost.
Power walking is easy to do, fun to do, and very effective in helping with weight loss and improving cardiovascular health. Anyone who can walk, of all ages, can join in on the fun of power walking.
POWER WALKING SUCCESS TIPS
In order to get the most out of power walking, take the time to get the right shoes and learn good posture. Learn the best way to carry your body and move your legs and arms that work for you to avoid causing neck, back, and leg pain.
• Wear the Right Shoes – It’s very important to ensure that the shoes you find are a good fit. They should be lightweight, breathable, and fit correctly. It might help to get fitted for your first pair of walking shoes professionally. That way you can be sure that they fit right. Shoes that fit will help you walk comfortably, longer.
• Warm Up – Like with any exercise, warming up will help prevent you from injuring yourself. You can warm up with a few stretches and slow walking before you get into your power walk.
• Use Good Posture – Stand up straight, look ahead, pull in your belly and squeeze your bottom. This will ensure that you get the right type of exercise for each part of your body.
• Engage Your Core – One of your most important muscle groups reside in your core or your belly. Having a large round belly is an indicator of potential heart and cardiovascular disease but having a tight core is a sign of health. To increase core health, practice holding your core taunt and firm as you power walk.
• Swing Your Arms – As you walk, try swinging your arms with your steps to help propel yourself forward and work your arm muscles. This will increase the effectiveness of your work out exponentially.
• Be Natural – Even though you’re squeezing your glutes, swinging your arms, and engaging your core, you still want to try to be as natural as possible so that you don’t injure yourself by forcing a position that doesn’t work.
• Set Goals – If you have a goal that you want to achieve through power walking, whether it’s distance, time, or weight loss you can do it. Ensure that any goals you set are realistic and actually can be done. Otherwise, you’ll set yourself up for failure.
• Boost Your Results – Speed up for a minute at a time to get your heart pumping then go slow for four minutes. Keep doing this throughout your power walk session and you’ll find that the results you want to achieve will happen even faster.
• Cool Down – Always take the time to cool down at the end of your power walk so that you don’t get sore muscles or cramps. The cooling down process can simply involve slower walking until you stop sweating and your pulse is back to normal.
The most important tip of all is to keep your head up high and try to enjoy your walks. When you power walk, you’ll start feeling energetic and wonderful within a week or two. Within a couple of months, you’ll have lost weight and improved your life exponentially.
Equipment Needed For Effective Power Walking
The great thing about power walking is that very little equipment is needed. You just need good shoes, clothing with comfortable moisture-wicking fabrics, and if you really want to, you can use a pedometer or Fitbit and an iPod for music to boost your energy while you power walk.
Types of Shoes – Try on shoes to ensure a comfortable fit but get shoes that breathe to avoid itchy feet, and that support good posture in order to avoid lower back pain.
• A good shoe for women is the Skechers Women’s Power Walking Shoe.
• For men, the Skechers Sport Men’s Skech-Flex Power Alley Oxford is a good walking shoe.
Moisture Wicking Clothing – When you wear clothing that takes away the sweat and keeps your body dry you can avoid rashes and other uncomfortable circumstances. There are a few choices that you might want to try to keep you comfortable when you walk.
• Women’s Short Sleeve Moisture-Wicking Athletic Shirts, by Opna
• Women’s Mid-Weight Wicking Thermal Leggings, by Duofold
• DRI-EQUIP Long Sleeve Moisture-Wicking Athletic Shirts, by Joe’s USA
• Men’s Moisture-Wicking Mesh Reversible Spliced Shorts, by Joe’s USA
Today there are a lot of electronics that you can use to make power walking more fun and to track your progress.
• Kamor Running Belts / Exercise Runner Belt / Waist Packs – Help keep your phone safe and listen to podcasts while you’re walking.
• Fitbit Charge HR Wireless Activity Wristband – This can help you keep track of your steps.
• Apple iPod Touch – Listen to music while you walk to help you keep up the pace.
Power walking is a fun way to burn fat, get fit, and see nature. You can do it alone, or with a group. It doesn’t matter. You don’t need fancy equipment either. You just need to get moving.
To get started, buy some shoes that are light-weight and comfortable to wear so that you’ll want to wear them and walk often. Some moisture-wicking clothes would be great too. You can get them online or even at department stores like Target and Walmart.
Set some goals, and try to commit to at least 30 days of Power Walking so you can see some real benefits develop from power walking before you choose to continue or not. Chances are, you’ll lose weight, feel better and want to stick to your new exercise routine.