“Percentage wise, it is 100% easier not to do things than to do them, and so much fun not to do them- especially when you were supposed to do them. In terms of instant relief, canceling plans is like heroin.”- John Mulaney.
Sure, it doesn’t seem like a big deal not to exercise, a sometimes it feels great to have that extra time for yourself just relaxing and catching up on your favorite TV drama. But, that little bit of instant relief right now may have an effect on many of your long term goals.
Now, I’m not saying you have to get up right now and go to the gym for three hours or start training for a marathon, because well I wrote this whole post so stick with me for a little longer ;). But, If those are goals you have, then great, but we are just taking baby steps. So, what is our baby step you may ask? Walking! I haven’t figured out why walking gets a bad reputation, but for some reason people think if you are not running then it isn’t a workout. Well, walking is actually better for your joints, and if you walk briskly it will keep you in the fat burning zone (see chart below). So, yes, walking 30 minutes a day can help! I am sure even the busiest person in the world can spare 30 minutes for a short walk. If you don’t believe me, let’s get creative. How long is your lunch break? Would you be able to spare 15 minutes of it walking around the building? What about parking your car as far away as possible at work or the store? When you need to talk to someone else in the office, go see if they are there instead of just messaging them. Never take an elevator or escalator again. The possibilities are endless and you can use them all in any combination to fit 30 minutes of activity into your day, as you are willing to put forth the effort.
Our world is very sedentary, which causes laziness along with more severe illnesses. By walking you can prevent heart disease, high blood pressure, and type two diabetes. Walking also helps maintain a healthy weight, strengthens bones and muscles, and improves balance and coordination. Start small, just add in 30 minutes even if it is spread out, then work up to 30 minutes straight. Once you’re walking 30 minutes straight, make sure you try to walk at a brisk pace, right around a rate of 100 steps per minute. For those of you who do not like counting to 100 over and over, a good rule of thumb is that your heart raises to a target heart rate of 50%-85% of your maximum heart rate (see calculation below). 50%-85% will keep you out of an intense aerobic exercise and keep you in what is known as the fat burning zone. Try to stay at a safe pace. Another good rule of thumb is that you should be able to keep a conversation while only being slightly out of breath while walking. Not only will your health improve, but your mood will too!
***You should always consult a doctor before starting any new exercise regimen***
Max Heart Rate Calculation:
Take, 220 – your age
Take this number and multiply by the decimal of the percentage you are trying to find for fat burning you want to be between 50-85% of your max heart rate (.5-.85)
Example 30 year old fat burning zone:
220-30 = 190 = max heart rate
190 x .5 = 95, and 190 x .85 = 162
So the fat burning zone for a 30 year old person is between 95-162 BPM