For decades, experts have argued about whether or not walking in the hills helps with weight loss. Most medical professionals believe that the movement helps burn calories, and many people have adopted a hunch that inclining their walk helps speed up their weight loss. But does it really work? Let’s take a closer look.
The Science Of Walking
When you think about it, walking is pretty remarkable. It’s a form of exercise that people have been doing for thousands of years, and even people who aren’t very active generally walk at least several kilometres each day. That’s a lot of walking!
Walking requires a lot of energy, and it also works pretty much every part of the body. It’s not just about moving your legs, as many people think. While it’s true that walking helps people lose weight, it also strengthens the heart, increases endurance, and helps build muscle. It even increases vitamin absorption in some cases! So it’s more than just a case of moving around to lose weight; it’s a full-body workout that you can do anywhere at any time.
The Advantages Of Walking Incline
One of the main reasons why walking in the incline is recommended is because it’s an accessible exercise for everyone. You don’t need to have any previous sports experience to be able to walk in the hills. All you need is a pair of good walking shoes and some warm clothes. You can even head out for a walk in the middle of winter if you live in a cold climate, and you won’t freeze due to the heat coming from your body!
In addition, people who walk in the woods or on the beach often report feeling a relaxing effect that reduces their stress levels and promotes a better night’s sleep. So it’s not simply a case of getting out your daily dose of vitamin D; it’s also a mental health activity that promotes relaxation.
The Disadvantages Of Walking Incline
On the other hand, there are some significant disadvantages to walking in the incline. The first is that walking requires continuous engagement of the brain, which takes a lot of concentration. When you’re in the middle of a conversation or listening to music, it’s easy to lose track of where you’re going and bump into things or trip over small gaps in the pavement. You also need to watch out for uneven surfaces and patches of gravel or ice that could pose a hazard to your ankles or legs if you’re not careful.
In addition, there’s the environmental factor. In some places, it’s not allowed to walk on the grass because it leads to overgrazing. In other areas, walkers are asked to walk on the sides of the road to avoid disturbing the wildlife, especially in the case of birds. So if you really want to lose weight and save the environment, you might have to find a way to combine the two!
To summarize, while walking in the incline is an effective way to burn calories and lose weight, it also has some substantial drawbacks. If you live in an area where you can’t walk on the grass, you’ll need to find an alternative mode of exercise to be able to comply with your health regimen. More research is needed in order to find a sustainable solution to the problem of pollution caused by excessive walking.
Walking Vs Running On The Same General Scale
Another way to look at it is to compare the calories burned per hour by walking and running. If you compare apples to apples (no pun intended), you’ll discover that running costs you significantly more calories per hour. For this particular case, the data comes from a study published in the European Journal Of Preventive Medicine. The study compared the metabolic rates of 10 moderately active men who either ran on a treadmill for 30 minutes at 7.4 km/h or walked on a slope at 4.8 km/h. They had to have a regular exercise regime and had to be weight stable. After the walk or run, the volunteers had to pee into a specimen container and their urine was immediately tested for glucose content. The result? The average person who walked had to burn about 292 kcal/h to match the metabolic rate of a person who ran. That’s a big difference!
The reason behind the higher calories burned per hour by runners is that they’ve been shown to rely more on anaerobic metabolism during exercise. Anaerobic metabolism is also the source of much of the energy that our bodies use during moments of stress and high intensity. So basically, when you’re running, you’re using more of your body’s energy stores, especially during those all-important first few minutes after you push the start button. This is why it’s sometimes referred to as a sprint to the finish.
To recap, walking in the incline helps you burn calories and lose weight. However, you need to be aware of its disadvantages. If you want to lose weight effectively and be sure that you’re not harming your health in the process, you might need to find an alternative form of exercise. If you like the idea of walking in the hills, it’s definitely a great way to get in a workout, but make sure you’re prepared for the mental and physical demands that come with it.