We Tried These Easy And Low-Impact Walking Workouts

 

These low-impact workouts still pack a punch

When you think about working out, you probably imagine lifting weights in a gym and going for a run. Sore muscles and potential backache? Simply part of the process. That’s certainly what I thought as well. So when I was looking for some workouts to do, I wanted something that was low-impact.

Not only are low-impact exercises easier on the joints, but they also come with a lesser risk of injury. So when I learnt that walking – yes, just walking – could be a good workout by itself, I jumped onto it.
It helps your body stay active and keeps the fat off. In fact, the recommended number of steps you should take a day is 10,000. I certainly don’t hit that step count on a daily basis. Knowing that, I tried these three different walking workouts to try to power walk my way to an active lifestyle. Here are my thoughts:

When I searched for ‘walking workout’ on YouTube, the Walk At Home channel dominated the search results. Despite this video having been uploaded three years ago, I decided, “why not?”. This 30 minutes-long video consists of continuous fast-paced walking with constant guidance throughout. It includes a cool-down walk at the end as well.

Difficulty:

This workout was the first I did, and I was pleasantly surprised when I could easily follow along. The moves were simple to execute and I was able to push through and keep pace with the instructor. What I found was that I needed to keep a loose body – tensing up just made me slow down. It’s all about relaxing your muscles and allowing yourself to be mobile.

How much did it burn:

While doing the workout, I found that I was not exhausted. I was tired, but in a way that left me with a nice buzz in my body. I was energised even at the end and could hardly believe that I had just walked quickly for 30 minutes and still felt good. The day after, though, I could definitely feel it a little in my legs. It was sore, but not to the point that it hurt.

How engaging was the workout:

I can confidently say that this was the most engaging workout out of the three I tried. The instructor continuously encouraged us and the excitement from the others in the video was infectious. The workout was fun to do, and it felt good to do as well. I didn’t even notice time passing, to be honest.

For the second workout I tried, I wanted to do something that was quick. Not everyone has time to do 30-minute-long workouts, right? So when I found this 15-minute workout, I was excited. Each move has a short walking interval in between while the next move plays at the side of the screen. This was great for me because I’m the type who likes knowing what the next move would be.

Difficulty:

Similar to the first workout, I could do each move without difficulty. However, maybe because I wasn’t expecting it from a walking workout, I had some trouble with the moves that required a bit of light jumping. It was a big change of pace from the rest of the exercise.

How much did it burn:

This workout hurt. With small jumps in between and a fast run on the spot to end it all off, my muscles were screaming at me to stop. I couldn’t wait for the whole thing to end. The exercise also focused a lot on strength-building exercises that left my legs burning. The next day, getting out of bed was more difficult than it normally is and the first few steps I took that day made me groan.

How engaging was the workout:

Truthfully, I didn’t find the workout that engaging. Music played throughout with little words of encouragement. But even then, I felt that the music didn’t really fit the vibe. If you try it out, try blasting your own music so you can jam to your own tunes. Or you can do it my way; while I was doing this workout, I was watching the SEA Games swimming event. Stopping a workout before it was over felt wrong when I saw all of them winning medals… ‘peer’ pressure is a powerful thing.

Credit: Body Project

Back with the 30-minute workout, I decided to try this one by Body Project. I thought it’d be motivating to exercise with the words ‘Progress Not Perfection’ to remind myself that I am making progress, even if slow. I used to think people were weird when they said that the most important thing was to ‘show up’ for your exercises, but I found out how true it was. Regardless, this workout also contained walking intervals in between each exercise. The most important thing about it was to keep moving.

Difficulty:

Some moves were difficult for me to do. They were unusual and unlike the ones in the other two videos. At one point, I found myself unable to distinguish between my left and right. At times, my right arm and leg would go up at the same time.

How much did it burn:

This didn’t hurt as much as the 15-minutes workout, but it definitely packed a punch. This was a full-body workout that made use of both my arms and my legs. The intervals were about 30 seconds each and I admit that it was hard to keep walking instead of simply resting. The burn metre for this exercise is dependent on how much effort you put behind your moves. I realised that when I tried to simply mimic the moves, I felt something was off until I started really putting energy into my kicks and punches.

How engaging was the workout:

This workout was fun, especially so because of the male instructor. He had a bubbly personality that made the whole 30 minutes feel more bearable. Watching both instructors interact was also very entertaining – they genuinely felt like they were both enjoying themselves.

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