What Will Happen to Your Body If You Walk Every Day
You don't have to run. Why walking is better for your health and weight loss
Running is now one of the most popular sports. This is a relatively simple and affordable way to keep fit. However, walking at a fast pace, according to some experts, is much healthier: it helps prevent diseases of the cardiovascular system and has fewer contraindications. We understand how walking at a fast pace affects the body.
Prevent heart and vascular diseases
In 2016, scientists from the Lawrence Burkeley National Laboratory, California, found that walking is more effective heart disease prevention than running. The researchers compared the performance of runners between 18 and 80 years old and those who prefer regular brisk strides. It turned out that walking reduced the risk of cardiovascular disease by 9% and running by 4.5%. At the same time, the load on the joints when walking is lower, which is important for older people.
Active walks in the fresh air activate blood flow, strengthen the heart and bones, tone muscles, improve sleep and lung function. They also help relieve tension and fight stress.
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To get the best results, you need to walk for 30-60 minutes every day. Exactly to engage. A leisurely walk is not a good workout if you want to increase endurance or burn calories. The step should be active, warming, so that the skin becomes covered with light perspiration. The speed can be increased gradually. If shortness of breath appears, it is better to slow down the pace. The optimal walking distance is 6-10 kilometers.
Virtually no contraindications
Running perfectly strengthens muscles and increases endurance, but also has a number of contraindications:
- being overweight (due to high stress on the spine and knee joints);
- cardiovascular diseases (hypertension, coronary heart disease, heart failure, etc.);
- problems with joints (osteochondrosis, intervertebral hernia, arthritis);
- varicose veins.
Walking has almost no restrictions. You can start with it to tone your muscles before running. It is required for those who lead a sedentary lifestyle. This is an optimal workload even for people with diabetes and asthma.
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Helps burn fat and strengthen muscles
When running and walking, the same muscles are involved: gluteal, calf and tibial, as well as quadriceps and muscles of the back of the thigh. However, running is more energy intensive. For an hour of walking at a brisk pace, a person weighing 70 kg burns, on average, 300-400 kcal. Jogging for 60 minutes allows you to get rid of 400-800 calories, depending on the intensity of the exercise. Jogging, for example, is not as effective as interval jogging.
However, when losing weight, it is important not only how many calories you burn, but also what reserves the body uses during training. There is a term fat burning zone - this is a certain pulse of contractions, in which subcutaneous fat is actively burned. Calculated by the formula: (220 - your age) * 70%. If you are 40 years old, your heart rate for burning fat will be 126: (220-40) * 0.7.
But is this cardio workout so effective for losing weight? Nutritionist and FPA trainer Irina Brecht talks about this on her Instagram.
Irina: For cardio, the body receives energy from two sources: fat and glycogen (carbohydrates that are stored in the body). At almost any heart rate, the body burns both, but the proportion of each source will change depending on the intensity of the workout. At the lightest intensity (for example, walking slowly), energy comes from almost 100% fat. When high (for example, running quickly up the stairs), the energy is almost 100% from carbohydrates. By accelerating, we burn proportionally less fat and more carbohydrates. Slowing down - vice versa: more fat and less carbs.
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There is a heart rate where the highest percentage of calories burned is from fat. But there is one point: just because more fat is used as a percentage does not mean that a lot of fat is used in general. For example, you walk slowly for an hour at a speed of 3 km / h and burn 300 calories, almost all of them from fat. If you run an hour at 9 km / h, you burn 900 calories. But the share of fat is only half, the rest is carbohydrates. In percentage terms, you burned less fat (only 50%), but in absolute terms - more, 450 calories.
Training in the fat burning zone does not burn more fat in absolute terms. But few can run an hour non-stop, and those who can usually do not need to lose weight. Therefore, a calmer cardio is recommended, which can be done for a long time and not get tired.
The intensity of training also depends on physical fitness: beginners should start at a slower, low-intensity pace, and the fat-burning zone is great for this.>
In general, walking is not as effective for weight loss as running ... The same can be said for developing endurance. However, absolutelyit’s definitely safer, especially for beginners.
Irina: Not only muscles are not prepared for running, but also heart and lungs. For many, even 5 minutes of jogging - and already pre-faint, the heart jumps out. A gradual increase in load works here, as in strength training, and there are many options to do it safely: cycling, ellipse, walking uphill. We are losing weight from a lack of energy. You can eat less and move more. Both are better, but any activity is suitable, not necessarily running, where there are more risks than benefits for beginners. Instead, you can quickly engage in other simulators: bicycles, ellipses, uphill walking, and just walk more.