Power Walking – If Just Walking Isn’t Working…

walking for health

If just walking isn’t working – maybe it’s time to ramp things up with some power walking!

Here are some tips for getting your walking routine going with power walking.

Power Walking Form

To get the most out of your power walk, you’ll need to follow the correct form. If you feel self-conscious, either get over it or move to a private area! When you power walk, sources say you need to keep your arms swinging and your chin up, and get your toes pointing up with each forward step (some refer to this as keeping your heels up. Either way, the point is to get your legs and feet moving in a heel-ball-toe formation).

Big Steps

One of the keys to power walking is to take lunging steps. When you power walk, you are moving fast but not necessarily taking long strides (in fact, sources say you should aim for quick, small steps as you power walk), but you can intersperse this with extra-long strides or lunges as you go. The lunges give your legs an extra workout and work the muscles a bit differently than the shorter strides.

Tighten Those Muscles

As you boost your walking program and get into power walking, you can amp it up even more by squeezing key muscle groups as you walk. Your rear and tummy are two places where contracting those muscles while you walk can help squeeze the most out of your workout.

Weights

Some fitness experts advocate the use of wrist and ankle weights to add even more challenge to your power walk. You can purchase such weights at most fitness shops or even some major retailers that have a sports section in the store. You strap these weight onto your wrists and ankles, which helps increase muscle exertion and ultimately muscle tone. Some sources also say that the weights increase the number of calories burned per workout.

Here are’s an inexpensive pair from Walmart.com:

TKO 2.5 lb. Pair Wrist/Ankle Weights
TKO 2.5 lb. Pair Wrist/Ankle Weights
Price: $29.99
Soft gel foam padding, full cotton terry lining Outside pockets for weights Easily adjustable closure for custom fit Pair weighs 2.5 lbs. Manufacturer’s warranty included (see product guarantee)

Think Speed

One way to help you in your power walking efforts is to walk as if you are in a great hurry. Think in terms of hustle, hustle rather than a pleasurable stroll. Listening to upbeat, active music while you walk can help. Sources say you should aim for 4 1/2 miles per hour, but this is not a speed that most people can achieve automatically. So make this a goal and start out walking as fast as you can (with the proper form), and work up to the 4 1/2 mph goal.

How to Start a Power Walking Program

Decide Where You’ll Walk

You can go for a treadmill, a track, your neighborhood, or wherever you can get a good, hard stride going. You will be walking in a particular form, so if you are self-conscious about how you appear, you may prefer to walk somewhere a bit more private, such as a quiet neighborhood or a home treadmill. If you like company and appreciate a group setting, a gym treadmill or public track might be just the place.

Gear Up

For power walking, a good pair of walking shoes is essential. You may have to spend a bit, but look for shoes designed for the purpose. The support these shoes offer is important for preventing injury and cushioning your joints. Dress appropriately for the weather, and make sure your clothing allows free movement. Carry a fanny pack for keys, cell phone, and other essentials; a purse won’t do as well.

Here’s a shoe that is especially designed for power walking, available online at Shoemall.com

Hush Puppies Women's Power Walker Walking Shoe
Hush Puppies Women’s Power Walker Walking Shoe
Price: $72.95
This walking shoe has it all, from top quality to a comfortable fit Full grain leather upper Fully padded collar and tongue Moisture-wicking DRI-LEX lining Removable molded footbed Bounce technology cushions every step Durable, flexible rubber sole PDAC approved for Medicare

Schedule Your Walks

Making your walks a regular thing not only helps you get them done, it also improves the overall fitness benefits, sources say. Since you are just beginning, experts recommend starting slowly and working up to 20-30 minutes 5 days a week. In fact, according the fitness experts, it’s best to begin at a moderate walking pace before beginning with the power walking.

Here’s an example of a beginner’s schedule, assuming a week is 5 days of walking:

* First week: Walk for 15 minutes at a moderate pace.

* Second week: Each day, add 5 minutes so you’re walking for 20 minutes. On week 2, you can up the pace for those 5 minutes, so you’re power walking for 5 and moderately walking for 15.

* Third week: Add another 5 minutes a day so you’re walking for 25 minutes – 10 minutes of those will be power walking, 20 moderate.

* Fourth week: Add another 5 minutes. Now you’re power walking for 15 minutes, and moderately walking for 15.

* Fifth week: Begin increasing the number of power walking minutes within your 30-minute walk. Increase in 5-minute intervals as described above until you are power walking for all 30 minutes.

Now liven up your walking workout with great music and walking programs/workouts:

Kathy Smith Powermix Lean Walk Workout Music
Kathy Smith Powermix Lean Walk Workout Music
Price: $14.99
Track Listing: 1. Ain’t No Love, Ain’t No Use, 2. Lady, 3. Crash, 4. Hey Mama, 5. L.O.V.E, 6. More More More, 7. Boyfriend, 8. My Style, 9. Hung Up, 10. Da Hype, 11. Here Comes the Rain Again, 12. When Doves Cry

Shape Fitness Music: Walk, Vol. 2: 70s Hits
Price: $11.99
Track Listing: 1. Freak, Le – Chic, 2. Funkytown – Lipps, Inc, 3. Ring My Bell – Anita Ward, 4. Boogie Oogie Oogie – A Taste of Honey, 5. Bad Girls – Donna Summer, 6. Relight My Fire – Dan Hartman, 7. Disco Inferno – The Trammps, 8. Enough Is Enough (No More Tears) – Donna Summer/Barbra Streisand, 9. Let’s All Chant – Michael Zager Band, 10. Xanadu – Olivia Newton-John, 11. I Will Survive – Gloria Gaynor, 12. Hustle, The – Van McCoy

The Healthy Heart Walking CD: Walking Workouts For A Lifetime Of Fitness
The Healthy Heart Walking CD: Walking Workouts For A Lifetime Of Fitness
Price: $12.6
Walk your Way to Health and Well-Being Regardless of your level of fitness, you can improve your cardiovascular health, weight control, stress management, and overall well-being through a simple walking program. In the American Heart Association’s Healthy Heart Walking CD, the leading crusader in the fight against heart disease and stroke presents two complete walking workouts to help you get started. Designed to be listened to again and again, whenever you have time for a half-hour fitness walk, The Healthy Heart Walking CD includes:  A 30-minute beginner’s walk; A 30-minute intermediate walk – for walkers ready for a faster pace; Original music written exactly to American Heart Association-recommended paces; Easy-to-do stretches and a diary in an illustrated booklet

Leslie Sansone: Walk The Walk - Firm Walk (A Christian Inspired Workout)
Leslie Sansone: Walk The Walk – Firm Walk (A Christian Inspired Workout)
Price: $10.96
Good health is a blessing – a connection of mind, body, and spirit. This uplifting, In-Home Walking(TM) workout is a great way to get both physically and spiritually fit. It’s a faith-centered, energizing workout that will leave you feeling revitalized every day, inside and out. It’s time to build strong muscles and a firm faith with this terrific strength-training workout that will leave your spirit refreshed and your body lean, firm and energized. when you add muscle, you’re giving your body beautiful shape and definition – that sleek, well-proportioned look we all want! Challenge all the muscles of your upper and lower body with these simple, effective exercises that target trouble spots like the upper arms, mid-back, the hips, thighs and buns, abs and waistline. The inspiring music keeps the focus on God’s blessings, so you’re not just challenging your body. you’re nurturing your soul. Are you ready shape up, inside and out? Have faith – you’ll love what this firming workout does for you.

Free Fitness App for Women – 6-Week Slim Down Program from iTRAIN

itrain-slim-down

Here’s a free women’s fitness tool I think you’ll love: The Slim Down For Women App – The 1st Live App from iTRAIN. 

Slim Down For Women is an effective, no-brainer 6-week program designed to help you to lose weight.

iTRAIN takes you on a journey where every day you do one workout at a time. Each workout provides you top celebrity trainer guidance remixed with the best music.

This App includes:

* Cardio audio workouts
* Videos
* Photos and text descriptions
* “Did You Know” Series
* Full nutrition program to complete the workout component
* Live access to our trainers if you have any question

For this type of workout, you will need access to a treadmill, a yoga mat, & 2 light weights.

This App is available for free at the App Store here.

Get more Weight Loss Tools
Weight Loss Articles and Tips
Weight Watchers Coupons
All Diet Reviews at Momscape

Things We Love – Pop Physique

popphysique

I DIG a good workout – one that really makes my muscles burn, so when the folks at Pop Physique asked me if I would like to try something called Cardio Butt School – along with another two DVDs in the Pop Physique family, I really couldn’t resist.

With a name like that, you start to get curious about what it would be like to take your butt to school. You start to get curious about how it will do.

In case you’re not familiar, Pop Physique combines barre-inspired exercises with elements of Pilates, ballet and light weights. The workouts feature a variety of effective and challenging moves, including isometrics, strengthening, core shaping, and stretching.

I liked each of the Pop Physique workout DVDs straight away. The leaders are likeable, and the pacing and the music are both really nice. Each of the DVDs offers a great workout and features strength moves that I might be intimidated to try in a class setting.

As I’ve written about before, I love to exercise outside – either running or hiking or cross country skiing – and this is how I do my every day workout because I can take my dogs and I get outside to suck in some Vitamin D, fresh air and sunshine. But I find that, if I do one of these DVDs three times a week, it strikes a nice balance of cardio and strength training.

The folks at Pop Physique says you’ll be burning 500 or more calories with each workout, and I believe it. You will be using all your muscles in moves that will make you feel strong and long and lean.

In case you’re wondering, I found that my butt did pretty well in school, actually. Cardio Butt School wasn’t the most intense workout I’ve ever done in terms of cardio, but my muscles were BURNING.

You can buy these DVDs separately, but they are each good for different days. One day you’ll want more cardio. Another, you may want to focus on energizing and strengthening. So do yourself a favor and buy the full 3 DVD collection, which is available online here.

Here’s more details of each of the DVDs in the set:

PopPhysique Hardcore
This workout focuses on shaping each muscle group with isometric muscle work.
Run time: 65 minutes.

PopPhysique Original Butt
Tone and sculpt in a low impact workout featuring strengthening and stretching. Promises quick results: “lifted rounded butt, sleek arms, flat abdominals, and slimmed legs.”
Run time: 55 minutes.

PopPhysique Cardio Butt School
Here, the Pop Physique team has taken the hardcore workout to a cardio level, flowing from one muscle group to the next, so you can get all the toning done in a short period of time.
Run time: 39 minutes.

For more information about Pop Physique, please visit www.popphysique.com.

Disclosure: Pop Physique provided these workout tapes free of charge for review, and this post contains affiliate links. The opinions expressed here are my own.

Red Carpet Ready Fitness Moves – Celebrity Workouts

rc2

Valerie Waters has 17 years of experience getting celebrities in shape for important movie roles, events, magazine layouts and awards ceremonies.

A celebrity trainer and fitness expert on LIVESTRONG.COM‘s Advisory Board and author of www.RedCarpetReady.com, Valerie’s clientele includes Ben Affleck, Cindy Crawford, and Jennifer Garner, and she has been featured in top publications including Vanity Fair, Fitness and People.

Here are Valerie’s top 5 fitness moves for getting the stars in red carpet ready shape for the Oscars.

1) Skaters- 20 each way

Cross your left leg behind your right leg as your lower body in the pictured position. Extend your right arm out to your side and keep your left arm hanging on the outside of your front (right leg). Jump to the other side, switching the position of your legs and arms (reversing them.) Make sure you keep your head up. The key is to make far jumps from side to side.


2) Lunge Kicks- 20 each

Stand with feet hip width apart and abs tight. Step back with your left foot and lower into a lunge so your right knee bends to 90 degrees. Squeeze your glutes as you push up through your right heel bringing your left leg forward, kicking it in front as you stand and straighten your right leg. Repeat the movement until you complete your reps, then switch sides.

3) Standing “W’s”- 15 total

Stand with feet hip width apart, abs tight and bent over at the waist about 45 degrees. Bend your elbows more than 90 degrees, with your palms facing each other, thumbs pointing up. Maintaining the same bed in the elbows, squeeze your shoulder blades together as you raise your arms. Pause, slowly lower back to the starting position. At the top of the movement, your arms should form a “W”. Pause, then slowly return to the starting position.

4) Star Push Ups- 10 total (5 each way)

Start in a push-up position with your arms shoulder width apart, elbows slightly bent and back straight. Begin by lowering yourself down an inch off the ground and then proceed to push yourself up, with one fluent motion. At the top of the push-up motion twist your upper body until one arm is positioned and held directly over the other in a straight line. Slowly lower yourself and repeat to opposite side.

5) Ultimate Toe Touch- 10 each side

Lie flat on the floor with legs out straight and arms out to the side of you. Raise your left leg and touch your toe with your right hand (or reach as close to your toe as you can), making sure both shoulders come off of the floor.

Do these 5 exercises as a circuit for maximum fat burning benefit.  Rest 1 minute after completing the circuit. Do the circuit 3-4 times. Do this every other day.  On the days in between do interval style cardio.  This could be a spin class or running outside.

You might also enjoy:

* More Celebrity Workouts.
* Weight Watchers Coupons
* Diet Reviews