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28-day walking plan: week I

Whether you want to lose weight or get fit, our plan will help you achieve your goals. It gives you the basics you need to get going and improve your fitness over 28 days.

Week 1: Take it easy this week.

Your Goal: To Walk for 30 min on top of your normal daily activity on at least five days.

 

Here are some tips on getting started.

Download the complete plan here.

 

Day 1

March on the spot for a few minutes to loosen up, then warm up for five minutes before you start timing your walk.

 

Day 2

Walk tall with your chin parallel to the ground, eyes focused ahead and buttocks tucked in to lessen the strain on muscles and joints. When you walk, hit the ground heel first and roll all the way through your foot, pushing off firmly with your toes. Keep your body loose and relaxed.

 

Day 3

Do the talk test: If you’re too puffed to talk, you’re walking too fast. If you can hold a tune, you need you need to quicken your pace.

 

Day 4

Take a rest day. Don’t panic if you’re a bit stiff. Aches are likely to be underused muscles reacting to activity.

 

Day 5

Increase your cardiovascular workout by swinging your arms as you walk. Bend your arms at a 90 degree angle and pump your elbows back and forth.

 

Day 6

If you’re pushed for time, take a shorted walk instead. Researchers have found that women walking for 30 minutes, five days a week, had almost identical fitness to those who split it into three longer stints.

 

Day 7

Have a rest day if you need it, but weekends are an ideal time to get others involved and explore scenic walks a bit further afield.

 

Source: Good Housekeeping UK, March 2010

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