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Dear friends,

In my last post,I wrote about the number of steps one should walk to burn those extra calories lurking in our body as fats and cholesterol which are harmful to heart as well causing diabetes[the fats in our belly,known as VISCERAL FATS causes a condition called Insulin Resistance]. As said earlier, one step is equivalent to 0.04 cals.,so if we walk about 10000 steps per day we may burn up about 400 cals. As 1250 steps amounts to 1 km,10000 steps will be 8 kms. This is not achievable every day. A brisk walk can cover up about 3.5 to 4.0 kms in about 45 minutes i.e. roughly 5000 steps. Remaining 5000 steps you will cover up in your day-to-day activities like household works,climbing stairs etc.

Now coming to on how one should start a regular walking program and how many times a week.Many of patients who come to me for weight management have multiple problems like arthritis,asthma,very heavy body[BMI above 35],high blood pressure,diabetes etc. The typical questions they ask and my answers to them are given below:-

1] I have severe knee joint pains,is walking advisable for me? My answer is yes,you have to. The reason is,because the arthritis-called osteoarthritis- has been caused by your weight.The more you are inactive due to pain,the more your leg muscles get stiff. Start with a small walk slowly daily till you get a feel of it i.e. get used to the minor pain and slowly improve the tempo day by day. The stiffness in the leg muscle disappear gradually and then over the days your gait will improve and you will walk faster till you achieve your goal. Of course, you have to consult your health provider for ways to relieve pain and treat your arthritis[I will cover up on the treatment of arthritis in a separate post shortly]. Walking also helps in releasing endorphins [the natural pain killer produced by our body] which helps in reducing pain.

2] I am taking treatment for high B.P.,will walking increase my B.P.? The answer is no,it will not. On the other hand, walking releases stress and will help reduce your B.P.

3] I have diabetes,how will walking help me? The answer is yes,walking helps to burn up excess sugar in the blood.

4] I have arthritis of knees and have to climb up and down the stairs-what precaution should I take? My answer—hold on to railings if you are aged and climb slowly,no need to hurry[other precautions I will cover in the section on arthritis].

5]Should I walk or jog? My answer–walk if you are overweight,jog if you are not. Jogging can damage the weight bearing joints like knees and ankles in an overweight person.

Having said all this, I will discuss more about when and how to walk in my next post.If you have any queries regarding walking,you may ask in my leave a comment section or write to me on vasu56deva@gmail.com.

Wish you pleasant and fruitful walking.