Walking is one of the most effective and fun ways to burn calories and lose weight, and it’s easy to fit into your daily routine. Check out these five tips for walking to lose weight!
1) Try walking first thing in the morning
Let’s be honest, you’re not going to wake up at 6 a.m. to hit your CrossFit box every day. If that kind of early-morning discipline is beyond you, but you still want to burn more calories and build more muscle, try walking in the morning. It’s a great way to wake up, but it’s also a way to beat insulin resistance (aka prevent your body from storing fat). To make sure it counts toward weight loss and not just cardio, include strength training two days per week; mix those sessions in with activities like jogging or playing racquetball—whichever you prefer!
2) Walk with a friend
Just as you’re more likely to hit your weight-loss goals if you surround yourself with positive people, it’s a good idea to walk with someone else as well. A walking buddy can help keep you accountable and remind you that you don’t have time to stop at that coffee shop or make an impromptu pit stop. Choose someone who knows your fitness goals and will be supportive of them. If possible, meet up at least once a week so that it feels like a routine instead of a one-off event—and can help stave off boredom. And, yes, smartphone apps may be tempting—but take it from us: It’s not as fun without your BFF in tow!
3) Include some hills
A research study from Italy found that people who went on daily five-mile walks in hilly areas lost more weight than those who walked on flat terrain. When they returned home, they continued walking, but they didn’t have as much of an impact. The hills kept them trained and made it easier to burn fat long after their vacation was over. A good rule of thumb is to try getting your heart rate up by adding one-quarter incline for every mile you walk; you can play around with it a bit depending on what feels right for you. To get faster results, include stairs or trails in your walking routine at least twice a week and/or speed up your pace if you can handle it!
4) Keep track of your progress
Walk a little more each day. Soon you’ll start building a habit that will change your life—for good. Many studies have found that exercise alone isn’t enough to keep weight off long-term. But it can still make a big difference in how fast you reach your goal, and staying motivated is an essential part of losing weight. A number of fitness trackers will even sync with most smartphones, so you can check in on your progress throughout the day and brag about your accomplishments on social media . If all else fails, there’s nothing wrong with rewarding yourself with new clothes once you meet your goal! You’ve earned it!
5) Alternate between fast and slow paces
Regardless of how fast you walk, vary your speed throughout your walks. One study in The New England Journal of Medicine suggests that varying your pace can significantly reduce fatigue and increase endurance. It’s a simple trick, but it works wonders if you’re looking to walk longer distances. Focus on posture: This one may seem like common sense, but remember that maintaining proper posture while walking is an easy way to prevent injury and keep your body moving forward without causing pain. One way to ensure proper posture is by thinking about having a string attached at the crown of your head—this will help avoid any slouching or hunching over when walking.