9 Reasons Walking is Great for Weight LossArticle posted in: Fitness
There’s a reason why so many people have been counting their daily steps. Walking is a healthy and convenient exercise that can help you lose pounds and manage weight to improve your healthy lifestyle.
Whether you walk throughout the day or engage in long walking exercises, walking is a great form of physical activity that most people don’t get enough of. Making more of an effort to walk is an excellent way to boost your physical fitness and lose weight. There are many simple changes that you can make to increase the amount that you walk. From parking further away from the entrance of the store, to walking instead of driving. Find out why walking for weight loss can help you reach your goals and keep you looking and feeling healthy throughout the year!
Here’s 9 ways walking can help with your weight loss:
1. It Burns Calories
Walking is a cost-effective exercise that can burn a good deal of calories to help you lose weight. Many variables can affect how many calories you burn during a walk, including speed, duration, incline, terrain and your current weight. According to Harvard Health Publishing, walking for 30 minutes at a 15-minute mile pace (four miles per hour) burned anywhere from 135 to 200 calories for people registering from 125 to 185 pounds. Walking about two miles in 30 minutes is a simple exercise you can perform on low-intensity days. No matter what you weigh or how much you want to lose, walking can help you feel the burn.
2. It Helps with Fat Loss
Walking to burn stored fat can be achieved with a little time and patience. In a 12-week study, published by the Journal of Exercise Nutrition and Biochemistry, obese women had “significant reductions” in body fat after walking for 50 to 70 minutes a day, three times a week. According to Mayo Clinic, the longer and faster that you walk correlates directly to the number of calories that you burn. Have fun and gradually increase your speed and intensity as you get more comfortable and experienced.
3. It Builds Muscle
Maintaining lean muscle in your body is important for living healthy, staying active and losing weight. Healthline explains that when people go on calorie-restrictive diets to shed pounds, they can experience a decrease in both muscle and fat. By adding in exercise such as walking, you can retain muscle while you lose weight says Healthline. Muscle can also help you burn calories, ultimately leading to more weight loss.
4. It Increases Energy
Many of us experience some sort of tiredness or fatigue that threatens our daily exercise plans. The next time you reach for a cup of joe to wake up, consider going for a walk instead. Research shows that walking can help with energy levels. A study, published in Physiology & Behavior, found that low-to-moderate intensity stair walking increased energy more than a low dose of caffeine in young women suffering from chronic sleep deprivation. Healthline explains that walking increases the flow of oxygen and energy-increasing hormones within the body.
5. It Helps Maintain Weight
While losing weight is difficult, a more fearsome battle can often be keeping the pounds off and maintaining a healthy weight as we age. A study, published in the Swedish medical journal Lakartidningen, found that just 150 minutes of walking each week can help individuals maintain a healthy weight and avoid packing on pounds. Maintenance of weight, along with these other amazing benefits is enough reason to incorporate walking into your weekly activities.
6. It Fits Into Daily Life
Luckily, walking is a great mode of transportation that can always be included in your daily lifestyle. From grocery shopping to walking the dog, there are so many ways you can walk and multitask to make life easier while burning calories and walking toward your weight loss goals. Walking is the perfect exercise for cool and warm temperatures and can be enjoyed with friends, family and pets. There are many ways to increase your steps each day:
- Walk a pet
- Take the stairs
- Walk to work
- Walk to the store
- Clean the house
- Park farther away
- Mow the lawn
7. It Reduces Stress and Boosts Mood
A study, published in the Brazilian Journal of Physical Therapy, states that participants experienced positive mental effects from walking 10,000 steps a day. Besides losing pounds and inches, participants also noted improved mood levels along with significantly less anxiety, depression, fatigue and confusion. Less stress and anxiety mean a healthier mental state, helping you become your best self. A better mood and decreased stress will make you more motivated to work out and walk your way to a healthier lifestyle. Walking can be a great way to relax, destress and walk off the day—along with the weight!
8. It’s a Year-Round Activity
Walking is one exercise you can resort to you in any season on any type of day. Busy days help you reach 10,000 steps, while lazy days mean you can substitute walking for an intense workout. Walking works in all temperatures and it can be enjoyed as a beneficial and fun exercise to help you lose weight, burn calories and build a foundation for healthy physical fitness. Walking for weight loss will help you slim down, stay in shape and strengthen your body all year-round.
9. Step Your Way to Weight Loss
It’s been heavily debated by studies, media outlets and reports that walking 10,000 steps a day helps you stay fit. A study, published in the Brazilian Journal of Physical Therapy, reported that overweight individuals who walked 10,000 steps daily over 12 weeks had significant weight loss, smaller waists and lower body fat percentage. Reaching for a goal of 10,000 steps daily can help you lose weight and maintain your health at any age. If you’re serious about walking to benefit your weight loss, invest in a pedometer, step-counting watch or similar device that accurately records your steps throughout the day. These devices will keep you aware of your activity and provide motivation to get moving. Work your way to 10,000 steps daily and walk towards your weight loss goals with ease.
South Beach Diet recommends 30 minutes of activity each day. This can include exercises such as walking.
*Always speak with a doctor before starting an exercise routine.