It might be hard to believe, but power walking is actually a fantastic way to lose weight and drop that pesky abdominal fat.
Yes, weights and cardio classes work too, but if you’re someone who’s either just starting out on a fitness journey, or has muscle or joint issues, walking may be your ticket to a healthier life.
The key to walking off the weight is the speed at which you move.
According to Art Weltman, PhD, director of exercise physiology at the University of Virginia, “strolling” isn’t the answer.
To actually benefit from a walk, you should be spending three days a week doing a power-walk, which means that the intensity of your walk is a seven or eight on a scale of 10. You should be breathing heavy, and your arms should be swinging at your sides. Having a conversation while power-walking may be possible, but it should be difficult.
If you power-walk three days a week, and then spend another two days a week walking briskly — faster than a stroll but slow enough for a conversation — you can expect to watch your fat melt away.
According to a study Weltman shared with Health magazine:
Women who do three short (about 30-minute) high-intensity walks plus two moderately paced recovery walks a week lose up to six times more abdominal fat than participants who simply stroll five days a week. (This despite the fact that both groups burn the exact same number of calories.)
The power walkers also drop about four times as much total body fat.
Power walking requires good gear.
One important key to a good power walking is not only your strides, but your equipment. A good pair of shoes and comfortable clothes will keep you going day in and day out.
Make a commitment to your health and purchase high-quality gear that will go the distance. The scale in your bathroom will thank you.