With summer right around the corner, and bathing suit season with it, a lot of us are trying to get our bodies as blazin’ and beach ready as we can. And with pedometers more popular than ever, a lot of us are walking to shed the pounds. I know this sounds crazy, since many fitness experts are recommending walking for weight loss and fitness. But walking might not be the best way. There are many benefits that come from walking, it increases blood flow and circulation, improves post workout recovery, and a strengthens the immune system. But, walking isn’t really effective at burning body fat, and, if you’re like me, and your primary goal is to lose that fat and flab, just walking isn’t the way. Like I said, I am not saying that walking is not beneficial, I am saying that if fat loss is the primary goal, there are far better choices that will deliver far better results.
Reasons why walking is NOT the best choice for weight loss
Walking Doesn’t Burn A Lot Of Calories.
The lower the intensity of the activity or exercise the smaller the number of calories burned per unit of time. Since one pound is equal to 3500 calories, you would have to walk at 5 mph for five hours and 40 minutes to burn the caloric equivalent of one pound. You can burn more calories in 15 minutes of bicycling at a high intensity level than you can in 45 minutes of easy walking.
It Doesn’t Result In A Large Metabolism Increase
Again because walking is generally low intensity it only gives you a small increase in metabolism that will only last 1-2 hours after the walk. But, if you do a high intensity cardio workout, your metabolism increases are larger and last longer, anywhere from 4 to 48 hours.
Why Is It Recommended?
- One reason is that people don’t want to hear that they have to work hard, so they figure some activity is better than none.
- Another reason is that the body burns more fat for fuel when exercising at an easy pace, however, the total amount of energy used is so small that you end up burning off little body fat. That’s also why when you choose the “fat burning” program on your treadmill or bike it has you exercise at an easy level. Yes, you’re burning fat, but so little that you’d have to exercise at that easy pace for hours and hours each day.
- High intensity cardio/aerobic exercise is much more effective in burning off the excess body fat. So, the solution is simple, 3 days a week try swapping that one hour walk for 30 minutes on the stationary bike or stair climber, or even a fun 45 min dance aerobics DVD and watch the weight come off faster, so you can feel fiercely fabulous and fit.
Catch you ladies at the beach!