The Four Kinds of Walking

Did you know there were other kinds of walking? For most of us, walking is pretty self-explanatory. You put one foot in front of the other and that’s all there is to it. You wouldn’t be totally wrong because walking is walking, but there are different ways of performing your walking in a fitness scenario. So maybe calling them the four kinds of walking is a little misleading, when what they are is four different levels to the intensity of the walking that you do.

The level of walking you chose to do will have an impact on your overall workout and they will provide you with a basis for future fitness choices. These four types of walking vary based on the frequency; the intensity and the time spent doing them. (See more about the FIT formula tomorrow. )

Lifestyle Walking

This is the most common form of walking. All of us do it. It’s the type of walking we do when we’re going to walk around the mall to shop or we take the kids out for a walk in the park. It’s low intensity and you may or may not spend a lot of time doing it. This is also the most frequently performed type of walking. If you get up and you move, you perform lifestyle walking. When we say we’re going for a walk or an evening stroll, this is the type of walking we’re talking about doing.

Fitness Walking

This is a step up from lifestyle walking and is designed to specifically get your heart rate up. If you go for a walk with the goal of exercising or you are walking on a treadmill daily, this is the definition of fitness walking. It elevates your heart rate and helps you to burn extra calories. The average fitness walker moves at a pace of 2.9 to 3.5 on a treadmill. If you are a fitness walker it’s usually your primary form of exercise supported by other activities.

High-Energy Walking

The high-energy walker is a trailblazer and they burn a ton of calories in this heightened state. You’re walking fast enough to complete a 10-minute mile. This type of walking is literally just a step below jogging or running because you are moving so fast. It’s not the type of walking a beginner should engage in. You’ll be hot, sweaty and your heart rate will be pounding. This is a primary form of cardio and it’s the anchor of your overall workout program. The high-energy walker likely walks only 2 to 3 times a week, but maximizes their burn during this part of their walk. They may alternate with fitness walking if they want to walk more often.

The Walk/Run

I read an article once that labeled the walk/run a hybrid activity and I have to agree with that label. This is a type of walking that lets you increase your speed without overdoing it. You alternate walking and running in order to increase your calorie burn and your heart rate. It’s an intense form of workout. For some people, it involves walking for five minutes, running for two, walking for five and running for two. These types of sprints increase how much you get out of your workout in the same amount of time you spend on a regular fitness walk and such.

What type of walking program do you engage in?

Related Articles:

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About Heather Long

Heather Long is 35 years old and currently lives in Wylie, Texas. She has been a freelance writer for six years. Her husband and she met while working together at America Online over ten years ago. They have a beautiful daughter who just turned five years old. She is learning to read and preparing for kindergarten in the fall. An author of more than 300 articles and 500+ web copy pieces, Heather has also written three books as a ghostwriter. Empty Canoe Publishing accepted a novel of her own. A former horse breeder, Heather used to get most of her exercise outside. In late 2004, early 2005 Heather started studying fitness full time in order to get herself back into shape. Heather worked with a personal trainer for six months and works out regularly. She enjoys shaking up her routine and checking out new exercises. Her current favorites are the treadmill (she walks up to 90 minutes daily) and doing yoga for stretching. She also performs strength training two to three times a week. Her goals include performing in a marathon such as the Walk for Breast Cancer Awareness or Team in Training for Lymphoma research. She enjoys sharing her knowledge and experience through the fitness and marriage blogs.

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