In today’s society, many of us are interested in getting in shape and becoming healthy individuals. However, sometimes exercise can be a drag. One activity that can be beneficial to your health is walking, but what can you do to make it more fun and effective? To help you stay physically active, healthy and happy, Dr. Marc Feder, our Chicago podiatrist, offers 5 helpful tips for making walking more fun and effective, while also protecting your feet from harm.
1. Bring a Friend
It is hard to stay motivated—we’ve all been there before. To help you remain motivated, invite a friend. When you invite a friend to join you on walks, it can help you remain motivated because you won’t want to let your friend down. Having a walking partner can keep you both active and healthy by urging the other to keep up with your walking schedule. Find your buddy and start walking today!
2. Add Weights
While walking can be beneficial for your health, you can always add a great aerobic benefit with weights. The addition of weights as you walk can help to create further exercise in helping you get in shape and say fit. You can add the weights to your belt or pockets to help evenly distribute the weight while you are walking. It also helps to keep things changing within your workout routine—add more weights as you grow accustomed to the weight!
3. Take Your Dog
Previously we mentioned to bring a friend, but if you have a dog why not bring them, too? By bringing your dog on a walk, not only are you getting exercise, but your dog is, too! Start out slow and bring your dog on a short walk. Each time you take a walk, try going for a longer period of time until you reach your end goal and are able to complete the same walk every day or every other day. Try to mix things up a bit and change your walking area to try new things and keep it interesting.
4. Get a Pedometer
A pedometer counts each step you take and 2,000 steps equal a mile of walking. Wear your pedometer all day to see just how many steps you take daily. And at the end of your workday, go for a walk to add more steps to your pedometer! Not only will you be getting exercise, but you will have fun doing it. Uh oh—only at 4,500 steps? Take a quick walk to build up your steps to 6,000 for a total of 3 miles! There are even apps on your phone to aide in walking and monitoring how far you have gone, your route, and other benefits.
5. Bring Music
Sometimes all you need is a good set of tunes to get you going for your daily walk. Choose upbeat music that can motivate you to walk and to keep walking. Try to walk to the beat of the music to make it even more fun and entertaining. By listening to your favorite music, you can keep your interest from wandering to other things on your to-do list. You can even create a walking-specific playlist of songs that keep you in the mood to remain active.
Remember to Wear Proper Footwear
While you can make walking fun, it is also important to make sure you wear proper footwear so that you do not suffer an injury that prevents you from working out. When it comes to your shoes, it is important to choose a good quality, lightweight walking shoe with breathable upper materials. The heel counter should be very firm and it should have reduced cushioning to position the heel closer to the ground for walking stability.
Call Affiliated Podiatrists, LTD Today!
Proper footwear is essential in protecting your feet from injury and pain, while allowing you to remain active and properly walk for exercise. It is important to first meet with your podiatrist prior to beginning any exercise or walking routine. By meeting with your podiatrist in Chicago, a proper walking regimen can be created to ensure appropriate exercise and protection of your feet. Are you a patient of Affiliated Podiatrists, LTD? If so, we would love to hear about your experiences below!