by Babs ‘O’ Reilly
(Miami Beach, Florida, USA)
You don’t need a fancy gym membership, a lot of expensive equipment or anything else to lose weight. You don’t need pills or to be on a special diet either. You might be surprised to learn that you can lose a great deal of weight in a safe and natural way just by taking a long walk every day.
Many overweight people, especially those who have arthritis or other problems have already discovered the benefits of walking. It is the safest form of exercise and most people can at least take a walk around the block every day.
The idea is to have a brisk walk at a pace that gets your heart rate going. The fact is that you won’t lose much weight by just ambling or strolling along. You need to get sweaty for this or you will not be optimizing how much you can lose. It is possible to lose weight by walking slow but it will take ages. You need to walk at a rapid pace and keep it up for at last an hour. The faster your heart pumps the more weight you will lose.
The secret is — the more you walk the more lean muscle you will develop. Lean muscle burns more calories as you use it. This means that you burn more calories because you have more muscular mass in general.
So how much weight can you lose by walking. Keep this in mind. A pound of fat equals 3500 calories. In order to lose that one pound a week you will need to burn off 3,500 calories. When it comes to losing weight it is the amount of distance that you cover that matters. Walking for a long time at a slow pace will not do much for your weight loss efforts.
You can expect to lose at least one pound a week by walking at a moderate pace for at least a half an hour to an hour a week. Not only is walking the best thing for shedding pounds but it can also help prevent other disorders such as heart disease, colon cancer, diabetes, stroke and breast cancer. Another bonus is that walking can help keep your immune system in good working order.
If you are not used to exercising you might want to take it easy when you first start. Take care not to overdo it if you are in recovery from an illness or operation. In fact it is a really good idea to get checked out by a doctor before you begin any kind of exercise program – including a regimen to walk your weight off.
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