5 Things To Consider When Creating Your Own Walking Training Plan

5 Things To Consider When Creating Your Own Walking Training Plan

Congratulations on making the decision to start walking for fitness. You’re well on your way to a more energetic, leaner and healthier life. Walking is a great way to improve both your mental and physical well being. Making the decision to start walking was your first step. Now, it’s time to create your own walking training plan.

#1 Assess Your Fitness

How physically fit are you right now? This may be a difficult question to answer. If you haven’t exercised in a while then it’s safe to assume that you should start slowly. Gradually build your way up to an intermediate or advanced fitness plan. If you start too quickly or ask your body to do too much, you may wind up injured and in pain.

A great way to assess where you are right now in terms of fitness is to get a pedometer and actually see how many steps you take on a daily basis. This information will also help you set your walking goals. For example, if you normally only take about 1000 steps each day that’s a pretty sedentary life.

Instead of aiming for the recommended goal of 10,000 steps you may want to first try to double or triple your daily steps. Ease into a walking program.

#2 Get Your Doctor’s Okay

It’s always a good idea to make sure you’re healthy enough for a walking training program. A routine physical and a conversation with a doctor will help you assess your current fitness level. It will also help you set realistic and safe goals.

#3 Goal Time

Okay, this is where we really start getting into the actual planning of your training program. What is your daily walking goal? Health and fitness experts recommend a minimum of 10,000 steps each day. That amounts to about five miles – 2000 steps per mile. If you’re already walking about that much then you’ll want to set a higher goal. If you walk less than 10,000 steps that’s a good first goal.

You can also set time, pace or weight loss goals. For example, you might want to walk for thirty minutes each day. Or you might want to walk three miles at a twelve minute mile pace. Note, that’s pretty fast walking! Or you might decide that weight loss is your goal and you want to lose a pound a week.

#4 Strategy

It’s strategy time! How are you going to achieve your goal? For example, if your goal is to lose a pound a week then you might take a look at how many calories you have to burn walking to lose weight. (Note: you generally burn 100 calories per mile so walking five miles or 10,000 steps a day burns about 500 calories. That’s a pound a week.)

Also consider when you’re going to walk and for how long. Schedule it into your day. You might decide to walk three times a day for 45 minutes or once a day for an hour. Take a realistic look at your goals and your lifestyle and create a strategy that works for you.

#5 Gear up.

What do you need to achieve your goals? For example, you might want a pedometer. You may also want walking shoes, a treadmill or an MP3 player so you can walk and listen to music. Fitness journals or tracking applications can also be helpful and motivating.

Creating a walking training plan is all about taking a look at what you want to achieve. Once you have a goal create a strategy to achieve it. Surround yourself with supportive people, tools and resources so you stay motivated and passionate about your walking success.

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