Cardio exercises are exercises that increase the heart rate of the practitioner, such as jogging, jumping, etc., and are one of the most effective methods for weight loss or athletes who wish to burn excess body fat. body.
Cardiovascular exercises do not target a specific muscle group, but rather require the coordination of multiple muscle groups, or the entire body. However, you may wonder if walking qualifies as a cardiovascular exercise.
First, walking is likely the most accessible form of physical activity currently available. If you are new to fitness or recovering from an injury, walking is the ideal way to begin.
Is walking considered cardio?
The simple answer is YES.
“Many individuals worry that walking isn’t strenuous or intense enough to be considered an effective form of exercise; however, walking is a highly beneficial, simple, and versatile form of exercise. for intensity and challenge, and is one of the physical activities recommended by the CDC,” says Shellie Wingate, a certified personal trainer and health coach specializing in helping women over the age of 40.
Walking at any speed provides numerous health benefits. Noelle McKenzie, a personal trainer and co-founder of Leading Edge, concurs with Wingate that walking is a cardiovascular exercise. She states, “Walking at any speed is beneficial for the heart.” McKenzie adds that walking at any speed is a challenge that will increase an individual’s endurance and resting heart rate.
According to McKenzie, the length of time you should walk depends on your pace. “If you walk more quickly, you can walk for less time, whereas if you walk more slowly, you can walk for longer.”
During a walk, monitoring your heart rate is a good way to determine how your body is functioning. If your heart rate is nearly the same as when you’re sitting on the couch, you can increase your walking speed. “If you’re walking at a cardio-appropriate pace, you’ll be able to speak normally, but not sing,” says Wingate. “However, walking at a leisurely pace can still help reduce health risks, maintain or improve mobility, facilitate daily activities, and increase life expectancy. live independently as you get older.”
How often should you walk while exercising? McKenzie cites CDC recommendations for a weekly goal of 150 minutes of moderate-intensity physical activity. Therefore, walking quickly will increase your heart rate. Wingate estimates that this is roughly a 30-minute walk on most weekdays. If that is difficult for you, she suggests beginning with a 10-minute walk most days of the week and gradually increasing the time as your body adapts.
Alternately, you may divide 30 minutes into three 10-minute walks or two 15-minute walks throughout the day.
What benefits does walking provide?
According to both personal trainers, walking at any speed is beneficial for both physical and mental health. Studies have demonstrated that regular walking reduces the risk of cardiovascular disease, type 2 diabetes, and obesity. Also beneficial for brain health. Walking reduces the risk of cognitive decline and can reduce depressive and anxious feelings.
Walking is a great way to burn calories, according to McKenzie, if you have a healthy weight loss goal. Unlike other forms of exercise, walking can frequently be combined with other activities. For instance, you could walk on a treadmill while watching your favorite television program, or you could walk outside while conversing with a friend on the phone.
According to McKenzie, brisk walking increases aerobic thresholds and endurance. This will translate to other physical activities, making them easier than others.
“Walking can also improve the quality of your sleep,” says Wingate. According to scientific studies, can help you get a better night’s sleep.
How can you make your walking more difficult?
If you walk frequently, you’re likely looking for simple ways to increase the difficulty of your workouts. One way to increase your heart rate is by going uphill or climbing stairs indoors. Increasing the incline when walking on a treadmill has the same effect.
Increasing your speed, according to Wingate, is another way to increase the difficulty of your walking workout. She instructs you to increase your walking speed for 30 to 90 seconds and then decrease it for another 30 to 90 seconds for the duration of your walk. If you do not wish to increase your walking speed, McKenzie recommends increasing your walking distance.
Each time you go for a stroll, you benefit your entire body. So smile the next time you encounter a jogger in your path. You are gradually improving your health.