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A change of seasons is the perfect time to start – or change – your fitness routine. Don’t wait until January to start reaching your health goals! Join over 100,000 Start TODAY members for a 31-day walking challenge to reap the physical and mental health benefits of walking.
Not only do we give you two ways to walk – leisurely and in intervals – but we also add a weekly stretching challenge. Then in the middle of the month, we add a 10-minute strength training workout with some core exercises.
As the weather gets colder, for those of you who walk outside may start to lean forward or feel a bit stiffer, there are exercises you can do during the first few steps of your walk to rationalize!
And for those looking to improve your strength, balance and muscle mass, we’ve created a five-workout strength training workout that can be done in the middle of your walk, at the beginning or at the end of your walk. The goal is to start including this in the middle of the month!
31 day hiking plan for fall
In the first half of the plan we will focus on making 20 minutes usually walks daily. Weekly stretching exercises will help loosen up those muscles and Get rid of any stress Or the anxiety you were carrying. In the second half of the plan, we’ll incorporate a strength training routine to support your cardio plan.
Despite its simplicity, walking has many health benefits, both physical and mental. Daily walking is associated with Cardiovascular health benefits Weight loss, if done consistently, can improve walking Cholesterol levels and blood pressure and slow bone decay.
Walking is also an accessible mental health tool that we can all use. Walking has been shown to relieve stress and increase alertness if done in an intentional way, and it can also help Treating symptoms of depression and anxiety. Of course, walking can always be done on a treadmill or an indoor track, but if the weather permitting where you live, grab a bottle of water and head outside for some fresh air. Giving yourself time to take a walk and absorb your surroundings – even if it’s only for a few minutes each day – can do Wonders for your mental health.
Walking exercise 1: 20 minutes slow walk. Move around and focus on breathing, and shape and clear your head. Breathe in through your nose and exhale through your mouth. Raise your arms as you walk. Carefully place one foot in front of the other, press with your full foot and be aware not to walk on your toes or hit your heels hard. If you’re bored with this, try taking a different route or finding an inclined surface to change up your routine. But be sure to keep it simple and focus on your breathing.
Walking exercise 2: 20 minutes of brisk walking. We will speed things up slowly and consciously. First, record yourself at a normal pace for 4 minutes. Then hurry up and walk briskly for 4 minutes. Alternate for 20 minutes in total. If this starts to ease, speed up your pace or increase the amount of time you spend brisk walking. Or, if you don’t like keeping track of time, go with the blocks or miles. After 4 blocks of uniform speed, accelerate to 4 blocks.
Stretching Weekly Challenge
At the beginning of walking, relaxing your body and performing dynamic stretches (which means you move while you stretch) can help you walk more comfortably and help prevent injury. That’s why I’ve provided four super simple stretches that you can do the second you take your first step in your career!
Week 1: Shoulder Roll
As you walk, roll your shoulders toward your ears and back and down. Roll back 10 times, then roll your shoulders forward 10 times. Do this at the beginning of your career!
Week 2: Neck Circles
As you begin to walk, gently lower your chin toward your chest. Then rotate your head so that your right ear reaches your right shoulder, then tilt your head back so that you are looking up, and finally lower your left ear toward your left shoulder. Repeat this neck circle 10 times, then do it starting from the left!
Week 3: Knee hug
This stretch is for hip flexion and also works for balance. Hug your right knee into your chest by holding your right leg or just below your right hamstring. The idea is to bring the knee closer to your chest to feel the pressure in your hip joint. Then put the leg down, and hug the left knee toward your chest. Repeat this 10 times (five times on each side) at the beginning of your walk to improve mobility in the hip joint.
Week 4: Point and Flex
Before you take your first step, put your hands on your hips or grab something to help with balance. Spread your right leg out in front of you off the ground. Point the toes, then bend the toes. Do this 10 times to stretch the hamstrings and calves. Then go to the left leg.
strength training routine
After two weeks of doing the walking exercises, we will add more strength training A few days a week. We’ll focus on perfecting form and building foundational strength.
Strength training will not only help build muscle; It can also help prevent injury and reduce pain while performing cardio exercises. Adding this 10-minute circuit to your walking workout will increase your strength, tone your muscles, and increase your calorie burn.
10 minute strength training session
squat: Stand straight with your hands on your hips. Open your feet hip-width apart. Bend your knees and squat, then press down through your heels to stand up. Repeat 10 times.
Workout (on the knees or on the table): If typical push-ups are too much for you, try doing modified push-ups on your knees. Start on your hands and knees with your knees hip-width apart and your hands shoulder-width apart. Then pull your knees back one foot, keeping your shoulders over your wrists. Pull your abdominals in and bend your elbows out to the sides in a push-up, then press back. For an easier adjustment, stand on a work surface with your feet a few feet off the table. Place your hands shoulder width apart on the table, and do push-ups from here. Repeat 10 times.
Triceps dip: Find an elevated surface, such as a chair, staircase, or balcony, and sit on the ledge. Hold the edge of the surface with your fingers pointing toward your body. Keep your legs in front of you with your knees slightly bent. Move your butt away from the edge so that you are no longer seated, and carry yourself with your arms. Bend your arms, lower your body toward the floor, and then push yourself back. Repeat 10 times.
Bicep curls: Stand with your knees slightly bent and a dumbbell in each hand. Rest your arms by your side. Bend at the elbows, and pull your forearms toward your shoulders. Repeat 10 times.
Lateral lift: Stand with your knees slightly bent and a dumbbell in each hand. Rest your arms by your side. Slowly raise your arms to the sides of your body, parallel to the floor, in a “T” position. Lower your arms to your sides. Repeat 10 times.
plank: Get into a pushup position with your arms shoulder width apart. Tighten your torso so that your back is not arched. Hold it for 30 seconds, or however long you can, then repeat 3 times.