Once you’ve found your walking groove, you may want to kick things up a notch by adding “power walking” to your routine. Also referred to as “fitness walking” or even “race walking,” power walking burns almost the same amount of calories as running. Even better, it’s much easier on the body. The reason being, walking faster requires the use of more muscles. This, in turn, burns calories more quickly.
Once they get used to it, most fitness walkers are able to cover the distance of one mile in 13 to 15 minutes. Avoiding these common mistakes helps anyone to walk faster.
When you power walk, keep your shoulders down and relaxed possible. Use good posture, keeping your chin up to a high level. Try to look approximately 20 feet ahead of you. Take smaller steps. To make it easier, pretend you’re walking along a straight line. Push off using your toes. Try to land on your heels. Breathe naturally, taking deep breaths. This helps you to get the most oxygen traveling through your system.
Your feet are always in contact with the ground when power walking. The good thing about this is the fact your body is never floating in mid-air, waiting to make harsh contact with the pavement with every step.
Statistics show powers walkers lose approximately four times as much total body fat as “regular speed” walkers, over the same period of time. Power walking, at four to five mph, burns close to 565 calories in 60 minutes.
Here is another interesting statistic. Women who participate in three 30-minute (high-intensity) walks and two normally-paced walks a week lose six times more belly fat than women who take five leisurely walks a week. Yes, six times! That’s really something to think about.
Race-walking is basically a step up from power walking. There’s actually a specific technique to it, as well as a strict set of rules. It is somewhat tricky to learn, but the benefits are greater. Race walkers get a much better cardio workout and burn more calories than other categories of walkers.