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Fitness Walking Workout Program:

Get in Your Daily, Low Impact Cardiovascular Exercise Indoors or Outdoors

Walking is the safest exercise on dry land; its benefits include cardiovascular conditioning, strength training and aerobic exercise..

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People who walk often live longer, drastically reducing their risk of death from all disease. Walking is low impact and ideal for those recovering from illness or injury. Take shorter, more frequent walks to build your strength, then add time to your walking workouts or add weight for increased muscle building. Fitness walking speed of three miles per hour takes time and experience, so beginners should start at a slower pace and work up.

Walk outside or indoors in bad weather, on a treadmill with an adjustable

incline. Routine walking with your family after meals builds family harmony along with fitness crucial for parents and kids. Take the following tips along with you!

  •  Start Slow and Then Stretch. Walking is a great beginning warm up for any other exercise, as it loosens the large muscles and gives you an all over warmth. Start out at a gentle pace for ten minutes; stop for stretching once your muscles are warm. Stretch your toes, ankles, calves, and quads every time you walk.  
  • Tighten Your Tush When Walking for Fitness. Long steps work your leg muscles, but to exercise your buttocks (called the gluteus maximus muscles, or "glutes"), take shorter steps in quicker succession.  
  • Use Good Walking Form - Heel to Toe. Your heel should hit the ground first, rolling across your foot and pushing off again from the big toe. Walking like this helps you maximize your forward motion, propelling you forward.  
  • Tummy Tightening During Your Cardiovascular Workout. While you're walking, sitting or just hanging around, maintain good posture with a straight stance and tightened abdominal muscles for a flattened tummy and a stronger lower back.  
  • Power up those Arms for Maximum Calorie Burning. If you were cross country skiing, you'd be holding poles and pushing your elbows back with every step. You can get similar effects on upper and lower arms by pumping your arms behind and forward while you walk. Poles are optional!  
  • Keep Your Body and Muscles Contracted. How would you walk if you were trying to keep a hundred dollar bill clenched between your glutes? To keep your lower back strong and for the tight glutes of a power walker, lift and squeeze the muscles of your backside and keep it tight while you're walking.  
  • Good Walking Posture Counts. Walking helps keep your muscles strong, but only if you give them the proper configuration to start with. Keep your shoulders back and your chest out with a tight tummy and derriere.  
  • Support Your Neck. For proper neck alignment, keep your eyes on the road about ten feet in front of you.  
  • Enjoy Your Walk and Breath. In walking for physical fitness, think about what you're doing to reap full benefits of the exercise. Get a walking partner for the days when you're tempted to skip your workout. Buy comfy walking clothes and good walking shoes. Different routes keep things interesting.  
  • Walk, Don't Worry About the Daily Stresses. It can be easy to fall into the habit of fretting while you walk, but if you want to get all the physical and mental benefits of hitting the road, pay attention instead to your breathing and the way you feel physically.

Seasoned athletes know that visualization creates changes in their form and in the body: imagine your individual muscles toned, the weight loss you want to achieve or the new body you'll see in a few short weeks of a power walking program. Focus on cardiovascular health by imagining your heart getting stronger, pumping more blood and oxygenating your body. Keep a log of your goals.

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