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Walking for beginners So you have a new pair of walking shoes and are ready to walk. Now what? Slow and gradual is the name of the game, especially for us sedentary types. Try setting a standard that is comfortable for you. Maybe try a 5-minute brisk walk, rest a couple minutes, and then another 5-minute brisk walk. And if you can go ahead and briskly walk for 30 minutes, the point is to not over do it in the beginning.
Once you have a start-up routine, keep a log of your progress and set new goals and challenges. Try going a further distance or change elevations by walking up an incline or steep hill.
“Accomplishing goals and setting new ones can make a big difference in someone’s overall health,” physical therapist Kelly Dzierzynski said.
Walking for the experienced New scenery and new challenges should be incorporated into your walking routine. Walking as fast as you can at a pace just slower than jogging for a distance and then slowing down to a brisk pace can improve muscle growth and endurance.
Would you like to stay mentally sharp, keep cancer at bay and become a more pleasant person others want to be around?
If you said “yes,” then get out and walk.
Illinois Valley Community Hospital outpatient physical therapy supervisor Kelly Dzierzynski, DPT, said spring time is a great time to begin a walking routine to improve your overall health and mood.
“Get out there and exercise, it’s essential,” she said, “anything that gets your blood flowing and your heart rate up is good.”
Dzierzynski said people should get a minimum of 150 minutes of exercise per week (30 minutes per day) and it doesn’t have to be done in a gym or to a new exercise fad. Simply walking will do the trick.
La Salle resident Craig Wachs can attest to that.
He began walking at Illinois Valley YMCA about a year ago for health reasons.
At first, he couldn’t walk a mile. But after a year, he’s up to three to four miles per day and has lost 36 pounds.
“I breathe a lot better too,” he said. “The key is to start slow and work your way into it. Don’t get discouraged because it’ll take time. Now, it’s just a habit, something I do.”
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