Mon. Apr 15th, 2024

The best exercise for weight loss, according to an expert

Fitness


So you’re finally found the motivation to get up off the couch and get started on your weight loss journey — congratulations.

But before you wander into the gym for the first time in ages and start torturing yourself by trying to do everything at once, even signing up for training sessions you’ll very possibly be ghosting within weeks, consider this — you may be doing too much, too fast.

Turns out, there’s one simple exercise that beats the rest when it comes to kickstarting your effort to melting away the pounds, according to TJ Mentus, CPT, a certified personal trainer at Garage Gym Reviews, in an an interview with Eat This, Not That!

Nordic walking - two women walking on a gravel road outdoor.
No need to rush to the gym to jumpstart your weight loss journey — it could be as simple as putting on a pair of shoes and going for a quick walk. Jacek Chabraszewski – stock.adobe.com

And best of all, it’s something you can do with a pair of good shoes and a safe neighborhood or nearby park at your disposal.

Say hello to power walking — your new best weight loss friend.

“Power walking can be done almost anywhere, no equipment is required, and all you need is a good pair of walking shoes,” Mentus said.

“Plus, walking is low-impact and creates little wear and tear on the body, meaning you can recover quickly and go for a long walk daily. This repeatability means you’ll burn more calories over the course of a week than tougher, more intense workouts that you can only do for short periods and need to take a rest day from,” he explained.

But don’t take one man’s word for it — there’s reams of research supporting the idea that walking still rules when it comes to weight loss.

“Walking puts your heart rate in a zone where fat is the main energy source,” Mentus said.

“This means that most calories burned from a walk will be from fat. So the overall calories may be less than a boot camp-style workout, but instead of burning carbs, your body will willingly burn fat,” he said.

Here’s how to do it

Rear view of senior couple power walking in a park
If you can’t do 30 minutes at a time, work your way up to it with 10 minute fast walks, an expert suggests. Monkey Business – stock.adobe.com

“Go for at least a 30-minute walk daily,” Mentus suggested.

“However, if you’re committed to losing weight, I suggest doing two 30-minute walks, one in the morning and one in the afternoon or evening. If 30 minutes seems too long, start with a 10-minute walk and try to go multiple times a day until you can comfortably walk for 30 minutes without stopping,” he said.

Treat your route like you would any boring treadmill routine — Mentus recommended beginning with a fast first five minutes, transitioning into 20 minutes of fast-paced but more measured walking, as long as you keep your heart rate elevated, maximizing your weight loss potential while also upping your cardiovascular health and fitness.

Then, finally, move to a five-minute cooldown period, where you reduce your pace on the home stretch, followed by some chill time on the couch. For once, you’ve earned it.




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