Blog by: Jyoti Hassanandani
Walking as a workout option – My take on it
The thirsty crow collecting pebbles parable is passé now. The modern crow finds a straw to drink water from the pot.
Moral – Update yourself. It saves lot of extra effort.
So once in a while a stroll in the garden is really refreshing and thought provoking. But walking can never be a workout option u can totally rely on for “overall fitness needs”. I believe and have myself experienced that walking will never introduce you to the immense vitality lying dormant inside you.
This might hurt sentiments of several fitness aspirants for whom that morning or evening stroll in garden means a lot. You little garden activity might really be adding lot of charm to your lifestyle but believe me walking is not a complete fitness solution. For real fitness freaks walking is not even a warm up option.
The 5 components of physical fitness that are most important, directly related to one’s health, and can be directly measured are:
- cardiovascular endurance
- muscular strength
- muscular endurance
- body composition
Of these walking only enhances your cardiovascular endurance and might change your body’s composition slightly over time. But you need more right? Walking harder won’t give you that because it isn’t that sort of physical activity. Period.
Let’s be practical. Time is so important. You need a workout option that reaps multiple benefits in minimal time. You should work smart. Just like your smart gadgets have evolved over time you too should evolve and embrace new techniques and methodologies.
- Relying totally on walking for your fitness needs is not a great idea.Doing same kind of workout same way everyday will put strain on particular body parts over the years.
- Walking is a seasonal option. You cannot go for walks in rainy season or on a bad weather day. How taxing a break from routine is we all know.
Your body is a powerhouse of energy. How can walking alone bring it out? If you are someone who is young and healthy, don’t rely completely on walking for your fitness needs. Bring out the vigor inside you.
Still don’t believe me? Compare people who have been walking in the park for years with people lifting, running, stretching in the gym, people doing yoga, Pilates, cross fit training etc. You will witness and acknowledge the difference.
BUT YOU LOVE WALKING
You don’t have to completely leave your favorite activity. Even the walking enthusiasts will you this. You have to make intelligent changes so that:
- You are not working out same body parts same way everyday.
- Bad weather doesn’t impact your workout routine.
- You get complete fitness solution without leaving your favorite activity.
SOLUTION – Couple it with some other workout option. Definitely not any cardiovascular activity because walking itself is a cardiovascular activity. You can couple it with :
- Weight training
- Cross fit training
- Functional training
- Pilates, etc
In short strength and endurance building exercises. Make sure you are stretching adequately after your exercises. So 3 days strength building exercises and 3 days cardiovascular exercises. Walking if you prefer that or aerobics, Zumba, swimming, treadmill, cross trainer etc.
What is life without a healthy body and what is life with a healthy body? Give your 100%!! Learn to embrace new methodologies. They are designed for the changing times.