Norman Regional Health System

Monday, December 26, 2016

One of the most basic methods to become active is to walk. You don’t need any special skills, just a comfortable pair of shoes and a place to go. According to the CDC, in addition to weight control, regular physical activity reduces the risk for many diseases, such as heart disease, stroke, type 2 diabetes, depression as well as some cancers. Physically active people have stronger muscles, bone and joints and tend to live longer. Walking is a great way to increase your physical activity in order to achieve some of these health benefits. Please consult your physician prior to beginning a new exercise routine.

In order to be successful, you must prioritize and schedule your time to walk just like you do with your other commitments. RESOLVE that you will start out walking with the goal to continue to increase your pace and distance. Baby steps to bigger strides. You can walk outside if the weather allows, head to the mall or use a treadmill at the gym. The key is to just get started.

There are a variety of online programs and smart phone apps you can use to help chart your schedule. The goal is to help an inactive person increase their distance, speed and duration over time. With the use of a cell phone, headphones and the app, the participant is given instructions. You can also use a spreadsheet and a watch if that works better for you. Each of these programs has about a 5 minute warm up and cool down. In between the two, the program instructs the participant how long to walk and when to start incorporating a run. As the weeks progress, other than the warm up and cool down, the walking time decreases as the run increases. The distance and duration of the work out slowly increase as well. Depending on how aggressive a program you select, you could go from being inactive to running a 5K in approximately 8 - 12 short weeks.

Now is the time to RESOLVE to become a walker, and if desired, transition into a runner. Resolve to be a better you!