- Going for a walk can help in increasing your daily step count
- Brisk walking can help you lose weight
- Walking for at least 1 hour every day to shed some calories
Walking is therapeutic. It is a form of cardiovascular exercise that can offer weight loss benefits as well. However, to burn calories, you need to put in a little extra effort. Casually walking in a park or walking after your meals can help with better digestion and may even increase your daily step count, but it is certainly not going to shed calories. Celebrity nutritionist Rujuta Diwerkar says that walking cannot be classified as exercise. While it may help you be more physical active, it doesn't challenge you physically and thus cannot be termed as exercise.
Can walking help you lose weight?
Well, it can, provide you do brisk walking for at least half an hour. This is not to infer that walking is not beneficial at all. In fact, walking has been found to be beneficial for heart health, controlled blood pressure and weight management. But to lose weight with walking, you need to go an extra mile in terms of pushing yourself by either brisk walking or walking faster than your usual pace, for 30 minutes or more.
- If you are beginner, it would be better to start slow. Give your body the time to adapt to being physically active, and then slowly progress towards walking swiftly.
- The same principle you can apply towards increasing the duration of walking. Start with an aim for waking 20 minutes at a stretch, then slowly increase the time by walking 5 minutes more every day.
- To reap weight loss benefits from walking, try to do it for at least one hour, but make sure you do it sustainably, without stressing or hurting yourself.
- You can also opt for cycling or jogging or any other form of physical activity of your choice. Pushing your limits to achieve better results becomes easier when you enjoy what you do.
All in all, walking is a beneficial physical activity for reasons beyond weight loss. It can help in reducing stress, rev up your energy and make you feel positive. Walking outdoors in spaces like your neighbourhood park can give you the time to reconnect with nature, which in itself can offer several mental health benefits.
Along with walking, make sure you are being physically active for the rest of the day as well. Experts believe that exercising for one hour in a day but being lazy and lethargic for the rest of the day or sitting for long hours in one place is not going to make you fitter or healthier. According to Diwekar, you must stand straight on your feet for around 3 minutes, for every 30 minutes of sitting. This is especially important for people in desk jobs as it helps in breaking long hours of sitting. Sitting at one place for too long can make you gain weight and belly fat.
So get up and get going!
Disclaimer: This content including advice provides generic information only. It is in no way a substitute for qualified medical opinion. Always consult a specialist or your own doctor for more information. NDTV does not claim responsibility for this information.