Wonders of walking

Walking is the first greatest achievement for everybody since the beginning of time... except for fish. Because we walk, people have been achieving so much. The good thing is - walking is a good thing. We naturally get strong legs, lungs, and hearts.

To get healthy, it helps if you walk often and briskly. Walk thirty minutes a day, or if you don’t have time, walk fifteen minutes twice a day, for the same effect. Invite people to join you, for fun. Talking shows you’re walking at the right pace. The best thing about brisk walking is gaining health while preventing injuries.

How fast is brisk? Imagine you’re crossing a busy street as the light is turning red. How do we prepare ourselves to walk that quickly? First, stroll for fifteen to twenty minutes to get your muscles, ligaments, and joints warmed up. Then stretch them to prepare for fast walking. For more on fast walking stretches, check out the website: Racewalk.


The form formula

Now you’re ready to walk like racers, who are fast and furious... but duck-like. To walk that fast, accelerate until your arms naturally swing or pump. Pumping your arms at an angle is better for speed because you keep your momentum, improve your balance, and use your arm muscles.

Check out a walking race and you’ll see the form is basically always having one foot on the ground, and the other leg must land straight. Notice the competitors wobbling their hips, and pumping their arms wildly. It’s as if their underwear is on fire - and they’re putting it out with disco dancing. Most find this form silly - adults point at us race walkers while kids crack up... that’s why I do it.

To sustain good form it’s best to walk somewhere with less traffic, so you can straighten your legs. Go where there are fewer traffic lights – so you can maintain your posture. And find places with less stray dogs... so you can see more stray cats.

Fast walking burns the shins because they’re always lifting the toes. See for yourself: Stand up, keep your feet on the floor, now raise your toes twenty times – hurts, right? Yes I know... you didn’t stand up or raise your toes.

Walk to win

Walk for fitness or for pleasure, either way you win. You stretch the life of your rubber shoes as well as your own. Who can ask for more? Just walk often, quickly, and maintain good form and you’re on the road to a lifestyle of fun, friends, and fitness.

Steve was the high school mile walkathon champion in 1985 for the PSSAA, (Philippine Secondary Schools Athletic Association, whose participating schools included International School Manila; Faith Academy, Antipolo; George Dewey High School, Subic Bay; Wagner High School, Clark Air Base; and La Salle Green Hills, Mandaluyong City.) He race walked the 3k of the National Geographic Channel Earth Day Run 2012, and beat his predicted time... despite waddling like a duck.

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