(CNN) – It’s no secret that walking is good for your health. Many of us try to take those 10,000 recommended daily steps Fitness They push us to comply.
But how many calories do we actually burn, and how can we get the most out of these steps?
There are a lot of deviceswearable“(for use) and online calculators to assess how many calories we burn while walking. However, research has shown that they are not entirely accurate.
In fact, most people burn more calories than fitness monitors suggest, according to a study published in Journal of Applied Physiology. The researchers revealed that in 97% of the cases examined, very few calories were reported.
important note: Before starting any exercise program, check with your doctor. Stop immediately if you feel pain.
The truth about burning calories
So how do we know exactly how many calories we can burn while walking?
In general, more calories are burned in less time with high-intensity exercise that increases your heart rate. However, walking is a form of moderate intensity exercise, not a high intensity style of exercise performed at short intervals, such as boxing or sparring. High Intensity Interval Training (HIIT).
So, to get the maximum calorie-burning benefits, it seems the most reasonable thing to do is walk at a steady pace that keeps your heart rate going.
However, there Studies show Instead of changing your pace to change your intensity and thus your heart rate, your metabolic rate can increase during walking by 6% to 20% more than if you maintained a steady pace throughout the walk.
What is more, The National Institutes of Health (NIH) says that when it comes to using walking to increase lifespan and overall health, doing so is actually more important than the overall intensity with which it is done.
Pay attention to your heart rate and how you feel
Make no mistake, wearable tech isn’t entirely inaccurate. They can certainly provide insight into your progress toward your calorie-burning goals. Use a fitness monitor to help you know when you arrive at Target heart rate zones It can help you increase the calorie burn and health benefits of walking.
The American College of Sports Medicine (ACSM) puts the target heart rate for moderate-intensity physical activity between 64% and 76% of your maximum heart rate. Because walking is not a high-intensity exercise, the greatest calorie burn is achieved at a moderate intensity, which means a fast but sustained pace.
according to US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (CDC), to calculate your maximum heart rate based on age, subtract your age from 220. For example, if you are 48 years old, your maximum heart rate would be calculated as 220 – 48 = 172 beats per minute.
Continuing our example for a 48-year-old person, a moderate heart rate would be between 110 and 131 beats per minute. During this type of exercise, you will feel your breathing increase, but you should be able to speak in full sentences.
distance The aforementioned search, which indicates a greater metabolic increase in varying intensity, you should change your pace while walking to include short periods of light intensity as well.
Light intensity exercises achieve a heart rate of 57% to 63%, according to the ACSM. For a 48-year-old, this equates to about 98 to 108 beats per minute, which should seem like a very comfortable pace, where a full conversation can easily be carried out.
Fat Burning Mark
Walking is often considered a great fat-burning exercise, and for good reason.
In fact, you cannot walk at a higher intensity due to the nature of the exercise; Therefore, it is performed in areas of moderate to low intensity, as you tend to burn more fat.
The existence of a “fat burning zone”, where only belly fat is burned, is mostly a fallacy, but there is some truth in the ability to harness the heart rate so that the body preferentially burns fat as fuel.
When you walk at a lighter intensity with your heart rate in the 57% to 63% range, you are more likely to use fat as a fuel source. The slower you walk, with a slower heart rate, you will consume fewer calories energy, but the calories you burn may come from fat.
Regardless of speed, shape matters
Most of us learned the art of walking when we were young, but many of us develop bad habits as we age that affect the way we walk.
In this video, I explain some of the most common mistakes we make while walking, and what we can do to correct them.
Make sure you have a good walking posture, that you move your arms back and forth, and that you distribute your weight evenly. Like any other form of exercise, improper walking can lead to chronic pain and even injury.
When done well, walking is a form of exercise Incredibly good for health And wellness in general is beyond your ability to burn calories. In addition, walking is arguably the most accessible form of exercise, as it does not require any special clothing, equipment, or membership.
Whether the goal is to lose fat, improve fitness, or simply improve your overall health and well-being, walking provides all of these benefits and more.