You have made the decision to start exercising, but you don’t know how to begin. Which Gym is best for you? Should you buy equipment? What type do you need? We’re here to tell you It doesn’t have to be complicated. Start by walking! It’s one of the easiest and most affordable ways to exercise. You only need a good pair of walking shoes, comfortable clothing, and the will to move your body!

Start SLoooowly …
Make every walk a complete workout by following these steps in the correct sequence. If you neglect doing this, it will make walking more difficult, and increases the chance for injury.

1) Warm up
This is exercising at a lower intensity in order to get the blood circulating and let your body know that you are preparing for exercise. For many of your walks it will only be necessary to warm up about five minutes. Marching in place while swinging your arms for 5 to 10 minutes, is a great way to get your heart beating faster. As you progress through your walking program, you will need to warm up longer.

2) Flexibility
These are exercises done after your initial warm up. The faster you plan to walk the more time you will need to dedicate to flexibility exercises. There are many different exercises in this group. Point and flex your feet, ankle circles. arm circles – forward and back, stretching arms up and twisting side to side.

3) Walk
Once your warm up is complete, you should be ready for your walk. For the first 3-4 weeks, do not push too hard. Your breathing should be elevated, but you should not be gasping for air. If you cannot talk, you are walking too fast, if you can carry a tune, you are walking too slowly, and if you can carry on a conversation while your breath is elevated, you hit the sweet spot!

4) Cool down
At the end of your walk, you need to walk at a slower pace to cool down. The harder you have worked out the longer you should cool down. In the beginning, your walks are very short and you only need to cool down a couple of minutes. As you’re walking time and intensity extends so should your cool down period.

5) Stretch it Out
Many people tend to forget about this step, but it really is important not to skip it. Get off on the right foot and take the time to stretch AFTER every workout. In the beginning, stretches should take at least 5 minutes. As you increase distance and pace you will probably need to stretch longer.

From TheWalkingSite.com

Image: FreeWalkers.com

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