Fitness

Establish your fitness routine

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We’ve got a program for you, whether you’re a beginner or veteran walker. Once you’ve mastered one level, we encourage you to go on to the next.

Warm up

Before you hit the trail, you need to warm up your muscles to avoid injury.

· For five minutes, either walk on the spot or down a block or two and then stop.
· Stretch your legs, arms, neck and shoulders using slow, easy movements. Hold each stretch for 20 seconds. Don’t bounce.
· Avoid injury by following proper warm-up, stretching techniques.

HEALTH ALERT

If at any point you experience dizziness, pain or shortness of breath, stop exercising. See your doctor right away.

Choose a walking program

Bring a bottle of water along with you. Drink when you’re thirsty, when you’re not thirsty and anytime in between.

Programs Frequency Intensity Time
Beginner three to four times a week Slow, easy pace. You should be able to walk and talk. Once you feel more fit, pump your arms and walk faster. Start with 10 to 15 minutes. Graduate to 30 minutes.
Intermediate four to five times a week Find hills or stairs that take about a minute to walk up. On a treadmill, increase the incline. Incorporate hills or inclines three or four times during your walk. You should be able to walk and talk, but not sing a song. 45 minutes
Advanced five to seven times a week Add interval training with high intensity and low to moderate efforts. Alternate going up hills or stairs briskly with three to four minutes of fast-paced walking on flat surfaces. Build up over six to eight weeks. Then do hills or stairs for four minutes alternating with one minute of brisk walking. 45 to 60 minutes
Alternatives

You can walk anywhere, anytime. Take the stairs, walk the kids to school, stroll through your local mall, hit a nature trail or hike through a national park. If you have joint, hip or back pain, try “water” walking at your local pool or fitness club.