Just do it because it's FUN!!!
Walking Is Not Exercise
By Brian Murray, Founder of mPower
You could walk all the way from Manhattan to Malibu and not improve your physical fitness. In fact, your physical fitness may become worse.
Everywhere you look people are walking. People walk from their cars into stores or buildings; walk to work or to go shopping, and then walk into their favorite cafe for a bite to eat. The fact is, people do a lot of walking – they have walked a lot from the day they took their first steps. Has their physical fitness improved with age? No. Walking is touted as the best form of exercise, yet more walking will not help.
Walking is not the best form of exercise and you know it. Unfortunately, you may not trust your instincts because of social pressure. I hope this article will free you from that pressure.
Before Jack LaLane and Richard Simmons, one of the pioneers of exercise was Leonardo Da Vinci. His drawings of human anatomy demonstrated the relationship between the bones as levers and the muscles as the engines that produce human movement. Understanding how the bony levers and muscles work together is critical for understanding why walking is not productive exercise.
While standing, bend your knees slightly, hold that position, and note the difficulty. How long could you hold this position? A very long time. Now stand with your back against a wall and move your feet approximately 18-24 inches away from the wall. Slowly bend your knees and slide your body down the wall until your thighs are parallel to the floor. Hold this position and note the difficulty. How long do you think you could hold this position? If you can tolerate intense muscle burn, maybe two minutes. Now you understand leverage, and why walking will never lead to improved physical fitness – it’s too easy.
Exercise should lead to physical improvement – that’s what you’re looking for. Physical fitness is best improved by putting your muscles in a mechanically DISadvantageous position. Walking is the most efficient form of human movement because it places muscles in a mechanically ADvantageous position. So the question is, if our bodies will only upgrade their capability when we ask them to exert effort beyond what is normal, and walking is the easiest and least energy-consuming form of human movement, how can walking lead to improved physical fitness? It can’t.
I have nothing against walking. As an infant it was something I aspired to do, and after one year in this world I accomplished my goal. I have been doing it ever since and remain amazed how little practice is required to do it well. I enjoy walking and you should, too. There’s nothing wrong with walking, but don’t walk and expect physical improvement. Walk for fun, not for fitness.
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