Physical activity is an essential component of any weight loss program and leading a healthy lifestyle. It is not necessary to do intense workouts at the gym to get rid of the extra weight – walking can be of great help, too!
The bottom line of losing weight is balancing the calories you consume and the calories you expend. The gist of it is that you need to expend more energy than you take in, a state known as a caloric deficit, says Grayson Wickham, a physical therapist and certified strength and conditioning specialist who is the creator of Movement Vault. He emphasizes that any kind of physical activity that you do throughout the day can help you burn off more calories. Running or running quickly will burn more calories, but you can still shed fat by going for a walk, which is a low-level activity.
“Walking is a great exercise because almost anyone can do it, at any time, without any equipment,” says Wickham. “It is also low intensity, so it is easy on your joints. Long walks can also be used as thinking or meditation time.”
For those who are new to exercise, those who are not in good physical condition, and those who are overweight, Susane Pata, CPT, CGFI, who is a certified personal trainer and content strategist for the National Academy of Sports Medicine (NASM), claims this is a fantastic choice.
It has been made clear that walking is an effective form of exercise with psychological and physical advantages. To maximize the advantages of a brief walk around the area or block, here are some tips.
Walking for Weight Loss: Does It Work?
Below are a few methods for burning calories through walking as a means to slim down.
Walking Helps Lose Belly Fat
One of the most effective aerobic activities to diminish both subcutaneous and hazardous abdominal fat is walking. A research was conducted to see how a 12-week program of walking would affect abdominal fat, insulin resistance, and serum cytokines in 20 overweight women. An examination revealed a marked diminishment in subcutaneous and abdominal fat in the women who were in the walking club when compared to the control gathering. Walking also helped improve their insulin resistance 1.
Walking Helps Burn Calories
Going for a stroll can help you shed pounds if you burn more vitality than you consume. Research revealed that walking can use up more calories than running at the same rate. For this project, fifteen volunteers who were in good health were assigned to either go for a walk or run on the treadmill at varying rates of speed. Investigations indicated that walking at a rate of 8.0 km.hr used up more energy than running at the same pace.
Long-term tension can result in weight gain in numerous ways, for example putting a damper on your metabolism and intensifying your desires for food. More exercise like walking can help reduce tension and make you feel better emotionally.
Helps Maintain Weight
Many people who decrease their weight have an apprehension of putting the pounds back on. Studies indicate that participating in a minimum of 30 minutes of exercise every day can assist in keeping weight levels steady. Going for a walk is an effortless way to get more exercise, and it can be done anywhere. Furthermore, going for a walk lessens the pressure put on joints and tissues, which reduces the possibility of damage.
How Much Do You Have to Walk to Lose Weight?
One mile of walking can burn 90-100 calories. It was discovered in one research that if you walk for a minimum of 300 minutes a week and adjust your dietary habits, you can lose body weight. Additionally, if you walk for 150 minutes each week, you can maintain a regular weight. Varying your pace while engaging in high-intensity interval training can accelerate your fat loss.
Following the Keto Diet Plus Walking Can Help You Shed Even More Weight
Here is an overview of the ketogenic diet and how you can make it part of your lifestyle to help you shed pounds faster with walking.
If you’re unfamiliar with the keto diet, it focuses on consuming low levels of carbohydrates while aiming to take in 60-75% of your calories from fats, 20-30% from proteins, and the remainder from carbohydrates. Your normal source of energy is glucose, however the ketogenic diet shifts your body into a state called ketosis, which causes your body to use fat for fuel instead.
Here are some ways the ketogenic diet can help speed up your weight loss:
The keto diet does away with sugar and restricts carb ingestion to a maximum of 50 grams or fewer each day. Cutting out sugar and following a low carbohydrate diet are both proven to assist in weight loss. Research has revealed that consuming sugar has been associated with increased abdominal fat, so getting rid of sugar from your diet can be beneficial in slimming your middle.
A 2014 cross-sectional study found that drinking sugary drinks was linked with having more belly fat.
The keto diet, which is high in fat and protein consumption, can help reduce your hunger and make you feel full. Eating regular meals will leave you satiated for an extended period, increasing your capacity to resist urges. This is why numerous people in the keto population have achieved results with this dietary plan to drop a generous amount of weight.
Researchers looked into the influence of ketosis on hunger in 50 overweight or obese participants who did not have diabetes. A total of 39 individuals finished an 8-week, extremely low-carbohydrate, ketogenic eating plan, and then went through a 2-week period in which food was re-introduced. The findings revealed that adhering to a keto diet allowed participants to reduce 13% of their body weight initially and inhibited the secretion of ghrelin (the hunger hormone) that is associated with weight loss.
Improved Insulin Sensitivity
Obesity and weight gain are both often connected to having a resistance to insulin. The cells in the body don’t properly react to the messages from the insulin hormone. This leads to an increase in your blood sugar, and your body begins to store extra glucose as fat.
2 Fat loss and lowering of stress levels are a few options to enhance insulin responsiveness, and the ketogenic diet can assist with both. A research from 2005 was done to look into the influence of the ketogenic diet on body mass, insulin sensitivity, caloric intake, and other health aspects in 10 people with type 2 diabetes who are overweight. The individuals under medical care were instructed to stick to a ketogenic diet for two weeks. An investigation showed that there was a noteworthy decrease in the amount of calories consumed, body weight, and increased insulin sensitivity in chubby individuals.
Many folks who are on the ketogenic diet also engage in intermittent fasting, which has been demonstrated to be effective for weight reduction and offers other health advantages. Periodically fasting can increase insulin sensitivity, which can facilitate weight reduction.
A research project observed the potency of periodic fasting in fifty-one overweight males. They got allocated 16 weeks of either permanent or broken-up intake limitation concerning energy. The research revealed that those who stuck to an intermittently caloric-restricted diet had a noticeable depletion in body weight and fat levels.
Tips to Maximize Your Walks for Weight Loss
Ready to lace up your sneakers and get going? Below are 15 approaches that can enhance your exercise session in the open air.
1. Perform a short mobility routine before your walk.
“Stretching out and activating specific muscles before your walk will help you decrease your chance of pain and injury during and after your walk,” says Wickham. “If you have pain during your walk, this is your body telling you that you really need to start dedicating time to your joint mobility. Everyone should be able to perform a basic life task such as walking without pain.”
2. Wear a weighted vest or backpack during your walks.
Incorporating extra weight on your walks will put extra strain on your body and improve the intensity, suggests Wickham. He further states that any activity that requires more effort will result in a greater amount of calories being burned.
3. Use a smartwatch or phone app to track your steps.
Pata states that keeping track of data can encourage people by recognizing when they have achieved their objectives and can compensate for any insufficiencies over the course of the week.
4. Add in short jogs or runs during your walk.
Engage in a cycle of 10 seconds of jogging or running, followed by 2 minutes of walking, and repeat. Incorporating small jogs or sprints into your walk can help to make the walk more vigorous and thus accelerate your weight loss goals, according to Wickham.
5. Create a fun playlist.
Hearing positive music while running on the treadmill can elevate your mood, and the same can be said when playing cheerful songs while you’re out and about—it can make the experience more enjoyable. Pata advises creating a playlist of your preferred songs which will take the same amount of time as your walk.
6. Bring a water bottle on longer walks.
According to Wickham, it is essential for one to be adequately hydrated in order to achieve optimal health. The better your weight loss journey will be if you keep yourself well hydrated and healthy. Drinking plenty of water can help ensure that you maintain your energy levels and cover longer distances.
7. Use a food tracker.
Write down the amount of calories you are using while you are walking if you currently use an app to keep track of the food you eat. Pata states that reflecting on your actions and comparing them to your desired objectives can help keep you focused. It demonstrates that you are able to accomplish your objectives and acts as a great incentive.
8. Stay consistent.
In order to get the most out of it, you need to be consistent with your walking, no matter how often it is – whether it’s on a daily basis or just once a week. Wickham emphasizes that maintaining good health is a long-term process rather than a quick solution. Think of ways that you can incorporate a walking routine into your lifestyle so that you will be able to stick to it. Frequent walking leads to greater weight loss.
9. Purchase a good pair of shoes.
Pata’s advice: Invest in a pair of comfortable shoes dedicated to strolling. Putting on these shoes produces a motivational mindset and an enjoyable walking experience. If you need some advice, check out these 15 walking shoes suggested by a podiatrist.
10. Plan out your walking route.
According to Dr. Wickham, it is possible to plan a pedestrian journey by utilizing Google Maps, so you will be able to be aware of the precise path and total distance you will travel. That means you also know how many calories you will be getting rid of.
11. Schedule your walks.
Putting a pencil mark in your calendar should increase the chances of you sticking to your plan to walk. As the saying goes, if you don’t plan it, you won’t accomplish it. According to Wickham, designating a specific time each day to go for a walk will help you remain consistent. Make walking a priority and figure out ways to ensure you can fit it into your daily routine.
12. Have a rainy-day back-up plan.
Disappointed that the bad weather has prevented you from going on a walk? Pata recommends planning for a rainy-day back-up so that you don’t miss out on exercise. Get a bag ready for the gym in case it rains, or take a trip to the nearest mall and take a few laps around it. You will be much more successful at exercising if you create a backup plan.
13. Invite a friend or family member on your walks.
This Wickham suggests that calling a friend to have a walk with you is the best way to stay on top of your exercise and relationship at the same time. Planning the walks together will help keep you both reliable. Having a workout buddy is still beneficial even for exercises that are not as vigorous.
14. Plan catch-up calls with friends.
What is another way to involve a beloved person in your outdoor excursion? Set up some appointments to speak on the telephone with individuals that you have been eager to reconnect with for a long time. Pata states that going for walks can help to sustain or develop relationships, pass the time, and may even become a source of pleasure in the long-term.
15. Add in walking lunges on your walk.
“Performing a set of 10 walking lunges every so often can help you build stronger legs, and gain muscle mass,” says Wickham. “Gaining lean muscle mass will increase your resting metabolic expenditure, which means you will be burning more calories at rest. This all leads to increased weight loss.”
Getting at least five days of walking in during the week, each day for roughly an hour to an hour and a half, can help you drop some weight. Alternatively, you can aim for a total of 300 minutes or more of walking per week. If you alter your nutrition and also experiment with different velocities and forms of walking, you will be able to notice quicker results.