Walking - is it how often or how far or how fast?

I walk about twice a week in a rugged outdoor setting with some climbs for 3 miles a time. I also try and walk as much as possible when in London - maybe 2 miles a trip and I go twice a week - so that's maybe 10 miles a week max. But is that really enough to be doing any good? When I walk in the countryside (on unmade tracks etc) it takes me about an hour to do three miles - is that too slow?

Would love some advice as my walking exercise is all a bit DIY at present!

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9 Replies

  • That's what I aim for 3 miles an hour that's great in my book! Keep it going as they say. All walking is good for you so well done Ed 👍

  • Thanks for the encouraging reply - my plan is to try and do four miles in an hour - my Nike app tells me the calories would fly off if I just took it up a level - but will take some to get there I think!

  • Good luck ed you can do it! 🏃

  • I think any walking is good stuff. Walking long distances builds diamond and burns calories. Walking fast and raising your heartrate improves cardiovascular fitness. Hill climbs are great. If you want to get scientific about it, you could start monitoring your heart rate, distances and such. And if you want to make it harder, swing your arms work vigor or start carrying a little backpack and keep putting more stuff in it to increase the weight you are bearing. Definitely more than one way to get fit with walking.

  • Hiya! All exercise is good for you, general rule of thumb, if it makes you a little breathless but you can still hold a conversation, then you are getting a good cardio exercise. Walking up hill or over rugged ground is even better, as you pump your heart more. In this heat make sure you keep sipping water, as dehydration is not so good. If you want to see it in black and white to help spur you on and put into perspective, try the online service My Fitness Pal. It's free to join and works out everything for you, how far you walked at what pace, whether up hill etc and will tell you how many calories you burned off. It also does it for swimming etc. It will also tell you what you've consumed calorie wise and break down all the vitamins and nutrients you are having, tracking your progress all the way. I find it fascinating, to see how certain food/exercise can make such a difference to how I feel. Good Luck, I'm sure you will do very well.

  • I try and do a bit of each every week, some are long slow walks, some fast and short and I try to do no less than three when I'm just walking, when I'm running as well I like to do two of each.

  • Thanks everyone for the great advice - the weighted backpack sounds like an easy way of pushing myself a bit harder. I've heard about mixing up the pace a bit - is it also known as High Intensity Training? And will give My Fitness Pal a shot. My son suggests I get a Fitbit to get a clearer picture of how far a week I'm really walking... thanks again.

  • Hi Ed. I'm far from an expert and all my exercises are what I've cobbled together but any walking is good for you.

    For me I found a routine helps, though the kids keep making me change my routine to run them places so I just get up a little earlier to compensate.

    Have you thought of going for a walk in the morning or of an evening? Nothing major maybe 15 minutes or whatever you're happy with.

    I find a step counter works for me like Samsung Health. I set a goal and never walk less than my goal and it will help me if I'm lacking on my goal to make sure I meet my target of 14,000 steps per day.

    Whatever you decide to do, any form of exercise is good for you so don't be disheartened just keep at it and most importantly try to make it work for you and around your lifestyle. I think that way it will be more sustainable.

  • Thanks Jon, the daily target is something I've never tried but reading your post I think I'm going to give it a shot - 15 minutes minimum every day is very doable.

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