Walking Benefits and What is LISS?
Walking is one of those things that I think is underrated when it comes to being classed as a workout. Maybe because we’re not surrounded by people lifting weights or because we’re not instantly dripping with sweat, people seem to dismiss it as an amazing form of exercise. We hear so much about HIIT these days, but what about LISS? What is LISS? It stands for ‘low intensity steady state’, a form of cardio training and is great for both your physical and mental health. LISS doesn’t have to be walking, but today that’s what I want to chat about.
How many people do we know that drive to a workout or get the tube to a workout? I’m sure I used to do it on occasion. But when you really think about it, you’ve sat in a car (probably got angry with traffic a few times along the way) and then you go straight inside to get sweaty. I totally get that walking takes longer in most cases, although in London I walk everywhere as it’s by far the quickest way to get around (destination depending of course!).
It might mean you have to get up a little earlier each day or having to wear an extra layer or two in winter, but you warm up so quickly whilst walking, especially when you’re getting a real strut on! My friends and family always laugh at me because I walk so quickly. I find it hard to ‘stroll’!
I’m sure when I use the term ‘power walking’ some of you are picturing two women marching through a park with some light weights in hand whilst having a chat, and that may sound amusing, but I think they’ve got a great thing going on. Maybe I’d make it a little snappier, less of the talking, but they’re getting outside into the fresh air and are immersing themselves in nature.
I’m not saying that our whole workout needs to be just a power walk, you might just want to consider starting your day a little earlier and walking to yoga, the gym or to work. I love marching my way to yoga. It’s the perfect 15-minute warm up to tuck my phone away in my pocket and clear my head for the class.
This is partly why I’m always in activewear. I like to be prepared to change plans at the last minute. Sometimes I’ll walk to yoga, do yoga and then go for a quick jog around the park after or just go for a longer walk. I’d rather have a sturdy pair of running trainers on just in case I fancy doing that, rather than a pair of trainers that might not do the job.
With 2016 coming to a close, if you think you can make a conscious effort to walk a bit more then make it one of your new years resolutions for 2017. It might only make a difference to your day by 30 minutes or so, but both your body and mind will thank you for it. And if you want to get the full walking benefits of that outside air, then pop your phone on airplane mode, tuck it into your pocket and look at the beautiful trees and buildings around you.
I know that having said all of this, it isn’t easy for everyone to just find an extra 30 minutes in their day to get their walk on, but even if it’s just at the weekend, I promise you’ll enjoy getting outside and will feel the walking benefits.
Love, Cat x