Categories

Tips to Elevate Your Walking Routine

Author

Take your stroll to a stride with these tips to elevate your walking routine!

Whether you’re a seasoned walker or someone who needs to dust off those neglected tennis shoes, walking is a simple way to transform your well-being. 

Imagine this: the sun shining on your face, the path stretching ahead, and the promise of progress with each stride. Whether you’re chasing fitness goals or seeking some alone time with God, your walking routine can be more than just a stroll—it can be a deliberate step toward better health.

Why choose walking? Because it’s a low-impact exercise that delivers a host of benefits:

Cardiovascular Endurance: With every step, your heart pumps a little stronger, your lungs expand a little wider. Walking improves your cardiovascular health, one beat at a time.

Increased Mobility: Those creaky joints? They’ll thank you. Walking lubricates your hinges, keeps you limber, and lets you move freely.

Stress Reduction: The rhythm of your feet on the pavement helps stress melt away and invites peace to enter your heart and mind. 

So, before you slip on those trusty walking shoes, let’s explore how to elevate your routine. From simple tweaks to more advanced techniques, we’ll unlock the secrets to a more intentional walk.

Before You Walk

Set a Goal:

Someone once said, “Life’s a journey, not a destination.”

Well, the same goes for walking! Before you head out, the first step is to ask yourself “why am I walking?”

What is your motivation for walking? Weight loss? Stress relief? Improved mobility? 

Set a clear intention; clear goals will guide your efforts and motivate you.

Be specific and realistic with your intentions, and set goals for frequency, distance, and walk time. 

For example, “I am going to walk briskly for 30 minutes on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.” or “I am going to walk 10,000 steps a week.”

Be Consistent:

Consistency is key. The U.S. Department of Health & Human Services recommends weekly 150-300 minutes of moderate-intensity aerobic exercise for adults.  So, 30 minutes of brisk walking five days a week will help you reach that goal.  

Here are some of the things I have done to keep my walking routine consistent: 

– Create a walking schedule. Block out time for when you plan to walk.

– Make a weekly date with a walking buddy; walking is more fun with a friend anyway. 

– Join a walking group. Find a Revelation Wellness Instructor near you! 

– Listen to an audiobook or walking playlist.  You might enjoy my REV Well Walking playlist on Spotify.  

– Join a challenge.  Check out Revelation Wellness’ Walking Programs.  

– Have a backup plan for bad weather.  Where can you walk indoors?

Whatever you do, set yourself up for success by setting realistic goals and scheduling your walks.

If you are new to walking, start with shorter distances and times, and ensure the times you set aside for walking fit into your daily schedule. 

If you can’t squeeze in 30 minutes, take two 15-minute daily walks.  Do what works for you!


Revelation Wellness Walking Programs

LPR FeaturedImage
22SP WWJ walking challenge
walking prayer challenge


Warm-Up

A common complaint I hear from my clients is that they are sore after walking.

Why?

Often, they walk without doing a warm-up routine. Warming up before walking increases blood flow and decreases the risk of injury and soreness afterward.

Try these exercises for 3-5 minutes to warm up before you walk. 

1. Arm Circles.

2. Shoulder Rolls. 

3. Ankle Circles.

4. Leg Swings.

5. Calf Stretches. 


Whatever warm-up exercises you do, warm up your upper and lower body.

easy walking warm up

Be Adventurous:

Avoid walking the same route every day. Variety keeps things interesting, and walking on different surfaces challenges your muscles. 

Explore new paths and create a weekly walking route that includes a variety of walking surfaces, including: 

Pavement or Asphalt: Good for consistent strides.

Grass: Provides cushioning and engages stabilizing muscles like your quadriceps and hamstrings.

Hills: Boosts intensity and burns more calories.

Remember to practice safe walking if you are walking on grassy, uneven trails or up hills. 

Ideas for Advanced Walkers

ideas for advanced walkers

Try Power Walking

Unlike regular walking, power walking involves maintaining a brisk pace, typically around 4 to 5 miles per hour or a speed of 15-minute to 12-minute miles.

To power walk, take shorter steps and increase the number of steps you take per minute. Swing your arms as you walk to engage your upper body, and keep your chin up, looking straight ahead. 

Sidenote: I recommend you practice power walking in intervals, alternating between faster and slower-paced walking.  I recently started incorporating power walking into my routine and have to shift back to slower-paced walking after 3-5 minutes.  

To avoid injury and fatigue, give yourself time to increase your pace.    

Add Strength Exercises

Combine walking with bodyweight exercises to enhance muscle tone and overall fitness. 

Create a mini exercise circuit and add lunges, squats, or calf raises during your walk. 

For example, walk for 5 minutes, do ten squats, walk for five more minutes, and perform ten lunges.

Try Rucking

Rucking involves walking or hiking with a loaded backpack, rucksack, or weighted vest. The additional weight allows you to burn more calories, improve endurance, and strengthen your core muscles. 

Note:  If you have arthritis, severe osteoporosis, or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease, talk to your physician before using a weighted vest.

Try Nordic Walking

This walking style uses special poles to increase speed and target upper-body muscles. Originating in Finland, it’s a low-impact exercise that combines cardiovascular benefits with a vigorous muscle workout. 

According to the American Nordic Walking Association, you can burn 46% more calories than regular walking without increased exertion.

Track Your Progress

Use a pedometer, fitness app, smartwatch, or tracking journal to monitor your steps, distance, and time.

Tracking progress keeps you motivated. 

Remember to celebrate milestones like a new walking time, or distance walked.

Stay Hydrated

Even moderate walking can cause dehydration. Carry a water bottle and sip throughout your walk.  Remember to hydrate before, during, and after your walk. 

If you’re struggling to drink enough water each day, here are three tips to drink more water. 

Cool Down

After walking, it’s essential to cool down and stretch your muscles.

A 10-minute cool-down routine will help lower your heart rate, deliver oxygen to your muscles, and reduce muscle stiffness and soreness. 


Lace up your shoes, get started, do it messy, and trust God to lead you to better health step-by-step!

Kat Sanford


Incorporating these tips into your walking routine can transform your daily strolls into an effective workout.

Remember to warm up, try new paths, and cool down.

Whether rucking, Nordic walking, or simply enjoying a brisk stroll, prioritize consistency and listen to your body. 

Regardless of which tips you choose to include, your walking routine does not have to be perfect.  In Proverbs 16:9, we are taught:

“In their hearts, humans plan their course, but the Lord establishes their steps.”

I love this reminder!  We can spend time getting ready and mapping out the perfect walk, but God may have other plans.  So, lace up your shoes, get started, do it messy, and trust God to lead you to better health step-by-step!


Kat Sanford lives in Houston, Texas, and leads local walking groups for women and active seniors.  She also teaches chair fitness, stretching, and strength training classes.   You can check her out on Facebook and Instagram


Find more walking resources:

Read

How to avoid boredom on your training walks


Read the Blog


Read the Blog

Listen


#833 Reving the Word: Just Walk

The post Tips to Elevate Your Walking Routine appeared first on Revelation Wellness.