Working out is an essential part of life. If you avoid sedentarism, you will be healthier, stronger, and your quality of life will be significantly improved. But that’s not news. Doctors all over the world keep telling us to exercise.
Now, not everyone exercises the same way. Some people lift weights, while others prefer some form of cardio. But are you interested in some cross-training? Let me just start by applauding your interest.
What Is Cross-Training?
Cross-training can simply be defined as a change in your exercise routine. It mixes different workouts so that your body feels challenged. It is necessary from time to time. Otherwise, the body settles for what you give it and becomes complacent. Where is the challenge in that?
One of the significant benefits of cross-training is that you start engaging new muscles, it keeps you even fitter, and your workouts are more well-rounded. Not to mention that you can avoid training injuries that occur when a particular muscle group is not trained enough.
Don’t Hurry To Dismiss Walking As Your Cross-Training
Walking is underestimated by many fitness enthusiasts. You may do it too. You’re thinking that somehow you are way past it, and it cannot possibly challenge your body anymore. If you’re a professional fitness instructor who works out 6 days per week, you’re probably right. But, you take a walk sometimes as a form of recovery. However, if you are a regular Joe, you couldn’t be more wrong.
If you analyze walking a little more, you’ll see that walking actually checks a lot of boxes when it comes to cross-training. If you’re not convinced, below are some benefits of walking that you may not be aware of.
1. Walking Is An Excellent Workout For Your Hips And Core
When you walk, there is no “float phase,” which is when both your feet are in the air. When you run, however, there is. As a result, walking helps generate or absorb force.
What does that mean? In simpler terms, your hips generate the force, and your core is transferring it efficiently. So, if you pick up the pace more and more, you create more force. As a result, you will enjoy a powerful and efficient hip and core workout.
2. Walking Is a Low-Impact Exercise
Walking is still a weight-bearing exercise; it has a lower impact than running, for instance. It is easier on the joints. But let’s not forget that your bones get a good shake, as well.
If you are usually a runner, you are going to benefit a great deal from walking. That’s because walking and running are quite similar. Your body already knows what to do because the biochemical and neuromotor patterns are almost the same. However, the aerobic demand differs, and that’s where the value lies.
3. It’s Harder To Make Excuses To Not Take A Walk
Let’s face it! Exercising is hard. Getting started is even harder, which is why you can come with tons of excuses. However, how can someone possibly make an excuse for not taking a walk?
You can go for a walk whenever you want. You can go to the park, leave the car at home when running some errands or when on vacation to see the sights. Think about how little effort goes into it; no equipment required other than your legs, and again, no membership fee!All you need is an appropriate active gear, a good pair of shoes, and a bottle of water.
4. Walking Is Formidable For Your Recovery
If you work out regularly, then you are more than familiar with the “recovery days.” All your muscles hurt, and you barely have the energy to get out of bed. That’s totally understandable, but not recommended. You have to move, and walking is great for your recovery.
Many athletes walk off the muscle soreness and fatigue that come as a result of hard work out sessions. It loosens your muscles, and you get a circulation boost which translates to a healthy dose of recovery.
The bottom line
Walking is not given the credit it deserves. But in reality, it’s an efficient cross-training exercise that has numerous benefits. You should give it a try. You’ll see the benefits really soon.