Easing yourself into itThursday 31 May 2012
Here’s a few things to try that will get the ball rolling if you haven’t been doing any walking until now.
- If you usually drive, park a bit away from your work, shopping, or wherever you’re going and walk the rest. Same thing if you use the bus.
- When there’s somewhere nearby you need to go, walk rather than drive. If necessary you can get a lift or take the bus to get back.
- Leave your walking shoes where you can see them. This keeps the ‘walk’ idea fresh in your head and makes it more likely that you’ll take the “next step”.
When you start walking as regular exercise try to make it fail-safe - start nice and easy. Put your watch on or set the timer on your phone and head out for five minutes. When the five is up, turn around and walk home (or back to work, or wherever). If five minutes seems nothing to you, start with 10 minutes walking out and 10 back. The main thing is not to give yourself a target that you’ll fail.
Once you have a pattern of comfortably walking a set distance you can increase your level of exercise a bit. You can do this either adding some more time or distance, or including more challenging stuff like hills. Increase the exercise level slightly each time, and give your body time to adjust after each increase. This slow, step-by-step (sorry!) increase may sound too simple to be true, but its a really achievable way to get you started, and when you create a pattern of success you’re much more likely to stick with it.