Brisk walking is one of the easiest yet effective cardio workouts to boost your physical and mental health. All you need is a pair of sneakers to get started.
You can perform this sweat-inducing workout either indoors or outdoors without the need for any equipment. Brisk walking can quickly help you shed off those extra pounds from your body and make it look more toned. Brisk walking also keeps your mind at peace and has a significant impact on your mental wellbeing.
Brisk walking is a low-impact activity that goes gentle on your body. To experience an excellent brisk walking session, you must learn to maintain a pace that pumps up your lungs and heart. However, try not to go too hard on yourself as it may lead to exhaustion.
Let’s now read more about brisk walking benefits and what makes it an excellent workout for you.
What is Brisk Walking?
The definition of brisk walking may vary from person to person. Some people consider walking a bit faster than your average pace to be brisk walking. However, this is partially correct.
There are three ways to understand the pace you must maintain while brisk walking. Let us read about each one of them.
1. Steps in a minute
The easiest way to measure the pace of walking is by counting the steps that you cover in a minute. If you can cover at least 100 steps in a minute, it is a good enough speed to be considered brisk walking, and you can get all the benefits of it.
If you don’t want to count the number of steps manually, you can even use a fitness tracker to show you the number of steps covered along with speed.
2. Measure Heart Rate
Another way to figure out whether you are walking fast enough is to measure your heart rate. For adults, the target heart rate while exercising must be around 60-85% of their maximum heart rate.
If you don’t know what your maximum heart rate is, you can calculate it as follows:
Maximum heart rate (in bpm) = Regular heart rate (220 beats per minute) – your age (in years)
For example, if your age is 30 years, your maximum heart rate will be 190 bpm (220 – 30 = 190 bpm).
You can check your pulse by placing your index finger’s tips and middle finger on the wrist. You can also use a fitness tracker to check your heart rate.
3. Speech test
A speech test is another simple way to figure out your walking speed. To apply the test, start talking while you are brisk walking. If you can talk properly with a bit of breathlessness, you are brisk walking at a moderate pace. If you cannot speak properly and constantly run out of breath, you are walking too fast and may consider slowing down.
So, you can easily measure your walking pace by applying any of these methods. Now let’s read about the gains of regular brisk walking.
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Benefits of Brisk Walking
Like any other cardio exercise, brisk walking offers multiple physical and mental benefits. Some of them are listed below:
Promotes weight loss:
Brisk walking can help you lose excess weight by burning calories. It also helps in increasing lean muscle mass.
Improves mental health:
Some studies suggest that brisk walking can help build brainpower. It can also help in boosting self-esteem and enhance the quality of sleep.
Reduces the risk of diseases:
Brisk walking can reduce the risk for type 2 diabetes, stroke, and other diseases.
Lowers blood pressure:
Cardio activities, including brisk walking, effectively lower and maintain blood pressure.
Lowers blood sugar level:
Brisk walking regularly can reduce blood sugar level and increase insulin sensitivity in the body. Muscle cells can easily use insulin to take glucose for energy.
Lowers risk for heart diseases:
Brisk walking can also reduce the levels of bad cholesterol (LDL) from the blood and lower the risk for heart diseases.
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Correct Way to do Brisk Walking
If you wish to maintain your weight, we suggest you brisk walk at 3.5 mph or more for at least 150 minutes a week, i.e. at least 20 -30 minutes each day. It will help you burn about 140 calories every day, making a significant difference in the long run. To avoid injuries while brisk walking, there are a few techniques that you can follow. They are as follows:
- Stand straight and keep your head up. Look forward rather than looking downward.
- Now relax your body, especially your neck, back, and shoulder. Avoid slouching at any cost.
- Keep you back straight and then roll your feet from heel to toe in a clockwise direction once and in an anti-clockwise direction once.
- Now swing your arms loosely and then start walking.
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Brisk walking can benefit your health, even if it is done for 15-20 minutes a day. It helps reduce stress levels, keep your mind at peace, and boost blood flow in the body, which is beneficial for your heart and lungs. It is an easy workout activity, and you can perform it even without a professional or a trainer’s guidance. However, if you have any injuries or health concerns, it is advisable to seek professional opinions from experts before starting your walking regime. Visit Oliva Skin & Hair Clinic to learn more about a customised health program today!