Achieving an ideal weight by walking a mile a day

Walking burns calories, improves metabolism, and reduces stress. We can do it pretty much anywhere, and it’s a low-impact exercise.

Plus, it’s FREE!

Walking has many benefits and can improve mood and permanently reduce stress levels. When we feel good, we are more likely to make healthier choices about what we eat.

We can start losing weight by taking a one-mile walk every day. The benefits of losing weight goes beyond the physical; we can also improve our mental and emotional health.

Walking Can Help With Weight

There are several benefits to walking which can help lead to weight loss. Exercising regularly is a great way to improve your overall health in many different ways.

If you manage your stress levels, it can help reduce the amount of belly fat you have. But let’s look at the benefits in more detail.

1. Walking Burns Calories

Although it may seem like a simple task, going for a walk is a great way to get some exercise in and burn some calories. The amount of calories you burn while walking depends on many factors, such as your age, gender, and weight.

This means that, in order to lose one pound, you need to burn 3,500 calories. But it’s not quite as simple as that. This type of exercise creates a series of events that can result in more weight loss than just the number of calories burned while walking.

If you want more accurate measurements of your speed and calories, there are many phone apps and trackers available.

Apps and Fitness Trackers

There are many ways to measure your progress. If you want to be more precise with your steps, you can buy a pedometer or fitness tracker. But many people just use their cell phones. There are a lot of apps you can pick from to track how many steps you take, how far you walk, and how many calories you burn.

2. Walking Can Help Change Body Composition

You can gain muscle by going for a walk. Your muscles have to work against gravity to move your body forward when you walk. This resistance helps to make bones stronger and muscles firmer.

Why is this important?

Muscles actually burn more calories than fat, even when you’re just sitting around. So, if you want to incinerate calories and jump start your metabolism, strength training is the way to go. It is recommended to alternate this type of exercise with other forms of muscle-building activity for additional benefits.

Muscle-building exercises include power yoga, pilates, and weightlifting.

3. Walking Improves Your Mood

There is no need to look further than your own two feet when you want to lift your mood. A simple walk can have a big impact on your mental state, making you instantly happier and more energetic.

If you go out with other people, there are even more benefits. Walking and talking with others can improve your mood, fight depression, and improve self-esteem.

Why is this important for weight loss? If you’re happy, you will take better care of yourself.

Depression may also cause changes in appetite, cravings for unhealthy foods, and a general lack of motivation to exercise. Someone who is depressed may start to gain weight.

So consider getting your friends together or making time each week to walk with your partner around the block after dinner.

4. You Get Vitamin D for a Healthy Body

Some of the benefits of getting sun each day include an increase in vitamin D.

If you’re eating a healthy diet and/or taking supplements, you’re probably getting enough vitamin D in your diet, but vitamin D deficiencies are still fairly common in the United States.

The use of sunscreen and staying inside is preventing skin cancer. Although sunscreen is important, it can block vitamin D production.

The advice that doctors give with regard to vitamin D intake may vary depending on the individual’s situation. So, what’s the solution to getting vitamin D?

Getting some sunlight each day is beneficial, but too much sun exposure can be harmful. The best time to avoid walking outside is between 10 am to 2 pm, and you should wear protective clothing.

You can get a sufficient amount of sunlight just by exposing your hands to the sun for 5-10 minutes while you’re walking outside each day.

You should be able to get your vitamin D intake for the day if you go for a walk that lasts longer than ten minutes. Make sure to put sunscreen on and wear clothes that will protect you, especially on your head.

An extra benefit of taking vitamin D is that it can help stop you from getting sick. Vitamin D often referred to as the “sunshine vitamin,” has a variety of potential health benefits, including reducing the risk of osteoporosis, heart disease, and various types of cancer.

5. You Get Healthier Feet

The feet are the foundation of your body. If you want the rest of your body to function properly, you need to take care of your feet.

If your feet are flat or misaligned, this can cause pain in your feet, knees, hips, and back.

Some people may need help from a physical therapist to create a program to make their feet stronger before they start walking every day. We want to avoid reinforcing negative habits our feet may have developed.

If your feet are in alignment and you don’t experience joint or muscle pain from walking, then walking can help strengthen your feet.

By walking every day, you will strengthen your bones and improve your balance. Walking will help your muscles to become more endurance and strong.

It’s important to find a good walking shoe. What type of shoe depends on your needs.

I recommend a regular walking shoe for general healthy feet if you’re just starting to walk regularly. I would recommend transitioning to a wide toe box zero drop shoe slowly if you have already been walking for 3 months.

This type of shoe can help the foot to walk more naturally.

Change your shoes about once a week, swapping your regular shoes for shoes that allow for more natural movement. If you feel comfortable, you can add an extra day of wearing shoes that allow for more natural foot movement to your weekly routine, either every week or every other week.

You may transition to your more natural shoes after 7-14 weeks. However, it is important to start strengthening these muscles early to prepare for more intense activity down the road. You may stress your foot if you walk too much in a natural shoe at the beginning, but it is important to start strengthening the foot muscles early. So take it slow, when strengthening your feet.

6. Walking a Mile Improves Your Digestive Process

You may feel like taking a nap after you finish eating, but it’s better to go for a walk. If you are experiencing gas pain, constipation, or indigestion, walking can help you by moving the food through your stomach and providing relief.

So when should you go for a walk? It’s better to walk after dinner because our body gets the most benefit during that time.

7. Walking a Mile Helps You Relax

If you relax better, you might feel better. An effective method for reducing stress while walking is to direct your thoughts to calming mental images or scenarios.

I find music to be very relaxing, and often listen to it while I’m taking a walk. . If you can focus on the present moment instead of worrying about yourself, you may find it easier to relax.

Stretching can really help me feel relaxed. In the evening, after dinner, you can go for a walk to warm up your leg muscles. If you want to warm up your arms while walking, you can pump them back and forth.

After you have completed your workout, you can begin stretching your muscles. Getting your body relaxed is a good way to get a good night’s sleep. Walking helps to prevent stretching injuries by keeping your muscles warm and may also help you relax and feel better.

It is advisable not to eat food or consume caffeinated or sugary drinks before sleeping in order to get a good night’s sleep.

8. Walking a Mile Gives You Pain Relief

Walking can improve many different conditions that people suffer from.

You should consult a physician if you experience joint pain or think you have been injured. The pain you’re experiencing may be due to something you weren’t expecting, like the chair you’re sitting in.

Walking can help relieve pain or at least help with recovery, depending on what is causing the pain.

Exercising regularly is key to maintaining good health.

If you’re experiencing pain, you should consult a doctor or physical therapist to figure out the cause and how to reduce it.

People with chronic pain may find walking helpful in managing their condition.

Most people who have this condition think that any kind of movement will only make their pain worse. Stress relief, increased pain management, and more stable joints are just some of the benefits that come with walking according to researchers.

This video discusses back pain and how walking can help. The Mayo Clinic has published an article discussing how exercise, like walking, can help ease arthritis pain and make joints feel less stiff.

9. Walking a Mile Changes Your Heart

The more an athlete trains, the better they become physically and their ability to exercise for longer periods improves. This is because they have changed their heart into a stronger, more effective muscle.

When you walk, your heart becomes more efficient, such as during a brisk walk.

Your health is constantly changing, gradually, from day to day. The longer you are active, the stronger your body becomes. The less active you are, the weaker your body becomes. If you walk regularly for a month, you may not feel any different, but your body will have improved.

You have gradually improved your heart health with small changes. You will notice a change in your daily walk routine if you stick with it long enough.

10. Walking Help Reduce Belly Fat

In a small study of overweight women, it was shown that there was a significant reduction in visceral fat after 12 weeks of following a walking program. The women in the study walked three days a week for an average of 50-70 minutes.

You can get the same results by doing less, but more frequently.

Walking helps to reduce stress and promotes better sleep, both of which are important in reducing abdominal fat.

How Far is a Mile

To put it in perspective:

If you’re going at a fast pace, it will take you about 15 minutes to walk one mile.

A mile is:

  • 1.6 kilometers
  • 17.5 football fields
  • 4 laps around a typical indoor track

As previously mentioned, it is very easy to measure the distance you have traveled by using a tracking device or phone application.

How Fast do You Need to Walk to Lose Weight

The CDC (Center for Disease Control and Prevention) recommends gradually increasing your aerobic activity to reach a goal of 150 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic activity, 75 minutes of vigorous activity, or a combination of both each week. Eating healthy is one of the best ways to lose weight, according to the CDC.

Moderate intensity means walking briskly (15-minute mile).

Incorporate Walking into Your Routine

If you are new to physical activity, start slowly by walking for 10 minutes each day. If walking for ten minutes at a time is too much, you can break it down into two five-minute walks. Start by running for shorter periods of time and then gradually increase both the time and the distance.

It is beneficial to aim for a goal of 30 minutes of exercise most days of the week. If you are unable to do a 30 minute walk, try splitting it up into 3, 10 minute walks.

To help make walking a part of your routine, here are a few tips:

  • Schedule it into your day: Set aside time for a morning or after-dinner stroll. Or gather a group of co-workers and go out during your lunch break.
  • Find a walking buddy: Invite a friend or family member to join you. It’s more fun — and motivating — than walking alone. Plus, you will probably be more likely to stick with it if someone’s counting on you to turn up.
  • Make it enjoyable: Listen to music, a podcast, an audiobook, or call a friend while you’re out. Or try going to a different place every day to mix things up and explore your community.
  • Get the right gear: Comfortable shoes are key. But if you walk often, it’s also worth investing in weather-appropriate clothing and accessories, such as a hat or sunglasses.

 

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About Rhoda ...

Rhoda is an award-winning dietitian, mature age model, and CEO of Sayvana Women.  

She is the creator of the Elegant Eating Solution, an affordable program that helps women avoid weight regain and feel great about themselves, without restrictive eating.

Elegant Eating is based on the science of protein leverage and follows the unique R.E.M.A.P approach to successful aging.

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