Cyclists or runners can skid your way around your neighborhood daily, but are their fast, hard workouts better than your choice of movement? After all, running, riding, or swimming may not be possible for everyone, at all levels of fitness, at every stage of their lives. We asked the experts to segment once and for all whether or not Walking Is Cardio – Is Walking Cardio??? — and how to make it a more effective exercise (hello, brisk walking!).
He explains that incorporating a balance of all different types of movements — such as cardio, strength, and active recovery days — is essential for a healthy heart and body. Marisa GolanCertified Personal Trainer, Base Ops Fitness Coach at Fort Athletic Cluband owner E (M) Powered Personal Training. But she says cardio doesn’t necessarily need to sound like running and sprints (although it can be if that’s what you want). “It really depends on your goals, your level of fitness, and what stage of life you’re in,” she adds.
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The most important thing when it comes to cardiovascular exercise is getting the type of movement that gets your heart working hard for about 30 minutes a day, five days a week, he says. Nicole Weinberg, MD, a cardiologist at Providence Saint John’s Health Center in Santa Monica. This can sometimes look like three to four days a week of cardiovascular activity, with resistance or strength training mixed in within two days as well, notes Andy Heckera celebrity trainer who has worked with stars like Margot Robbie.
What counts as cardio, and what is a cardio exercise?
When it comes to cardio, Golan suggests that your heart rate can be a good indicator of how hard you are working. To calculate your maximum heart rate (the rate you should never exceed), you can use the base formula for 220 minus your age. These calculations are not the end of the day, Golan says, and several studies have indicated that they are too general to be accurate. But, it’s a good idea to work through it to get an idea of where you’d like to be for a good cardio workout. Once you know your maximum heart rate, you can figure out where your heart rate should be using the three exercise zones.
- first region. Known as the recovery zone, Golan says your heart rate will be between 65 and 75% of your calculated maximum heart rate.
- The second region. To achieve anaerobic exercise, Golan suggests that your heart rate will reach about 75 to 80% of your calculated maximum heart rate.
- Third region. For a true high-intensity workout, your heart rate will reach this range for short periods of time. For no longer than 60 seconds, Golan says, your heart rate will be between 80 to 90% of your maximum calculated heart rate.
For what cardiologists consider cardiovascular exercise, Dr. Weinberg says you’ll need to reach the third zone, or about 85% of your maximum heart rate. It emphasizes that you do not need your heart rate to be at this level throughout your life entire Exercise, but aim for it during exercise to get powerful cardiovascular benefits.
“When your heart rate is at that limit, you have changes in flow throughout your arteries,” she says. “Your heart is a muscle, so a lot of it is about exercising that muscle, getting good blood flow, and expanding and contrasting your heart.”
In addition to measuring your heart rate with a heart-monitoring fitness tracker, Golan says using a speaking test is a great option to make sure you’re pushing yourself to get a cardiovascular workout. Complete a conversation without panting, you probably aren’t pushing yourself hard enough,” she says. Aim to be a bit of a breath during the conversation, and you’ll likely be in a good place for heart-healthy movement.
Is walking a good cardio exercise?
Although cardiovascular exercises like running or jogging can really do the trick, Dr. Weinberg is a huge fan of Walking As a form of cardio exercise that’s gentle on your joints. She even says that her patients of advanced age always count Walking for longevity. But your daily walk with your dog may not quite cut it. The key to making walking an effective cardio exercise is to make sure that you breathe a little while moving and that you’re constantly moving throughout the entire walk.
And even if your walk on a day is a little lighter, Golan says this can be a great option for active recovery days, which are when you don’t necessarily exercise, but use movement to help you recover from your workout days. In addition, slow walking can be a great form of non-exercise activity thermogenesis (NEAT), which are different activities you can do where you are moving but not necessarily doing high-intensity interval exercises or lifting weights, such as cleaning the house or Walking dog.
“I’m all about walking,” Golan says. “If you are someone who wants to work in endurance training or Weight lossIt’s a great gateway to high intensity cardio.”
What are the benefits of walking, and is walking good for you?
While you can definitely walk on a treadmill (which is a great option!), Golan says there are some pretty cool things to do The benefits of walking the outside. A walk in the sunlight can increase vitamin D, blood flow, and can be a mental refresher (It brings you happiness and reduces your stress). Additionally, Hecker likes that walking can have healing properties and is a common exercise doctors initially prescribe after surgery.
“Walking is not only good for your heart, but it is good for building muscle strength, good for respiratory health, good for digestion, and can improve the immune system,” Dr. Weinberg adds. She always suggests walking after a meal, as it can help lower your blood sugar, and walking helps burn off the food you just ate. Fuel for your walking.
In addition, walking is especially great for those who have joint problems. “I love walking. I love it for the joints. It’s just a low-impact form of cardio,” Hecker says. “I would recommend it to anyone who has joint issues or doesn’t want to run and doesn’t want to do this high-impact, high-intensity form of cardio.”
How to Maximize Your Walking Workout
The first thing you want Get the most out of your walking workout It’s that you’re hitting a speed that makes you feel short of breath or your heart rate goes up. To make sure you can reach the correct speed, Dr. Weinberg suggests that although a file audio notation It can be great while taking a walk, listening to fast-paced music, or walking with a friend that can help you keep a good clip.
But if you’re looking to take it to the next level and reap the cardiovascular benefits, Golan suggests getting your blood flowing and working your heart by increasing your pace to brisk walking, walking uphill, or adding small weights to your routine. And if you’re really looking to switch it up, Golan says hiking can be a great option to be kind to your joints but still get your heart rate up.
If walking at a faster rate isn’t in the cards for you, Hecker says that increasing your walking duration can also be a great option. If you like to run normally for 30 minutes, but want to walk on a certain day, you can get similar benefits for an hour, she says.
Ultimately, it is important to get yourself moving at your best. “We make the exercises very complex,” says Dr. Weinberg. “It’s not really complicated. You have two feet. I’m out. Just use it.”
Arielle Weg is Associate Editor at protection She loves to share her favorite wellness and nutrition interests. She has previously managed content at The Vitamin Shoppe, and her work has also appeared in Women’s health, men’s health, cooking light, my recipes, and more. You can usually find her taking an online exercise class or making a mess in the kitchen, creating something delicious that she found in her cookbook collection or saved on Instagram.