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Here are some ideas to show you how to take it to the next level.
Making walking more of a challenge enables you to burn more calories and raise your working heart rate. You can do this by working out on a treadmill with an incline setting and wearing a weighted vest. You can start with either one to scale up or combine both ideas for a greater challenge.
According to the American Council on Exercise, wearing a weighted vest is a great option if you're relatively new to exercise because it won't feel as difficult as ramping up your speed, for instance. If you choose a vest that weighs about 15 percent of your bodyweight, you can burn 12 percent more calories when walking at 2.5 miles per hour -- an easy pace. You can achieve a slightly higher calorie burn by wearing a vest that's just 10 percent of your bodyweight if you walk on a treadmill at that speed and at an incline with a 5 or 10 percent grade.
To ease into the combined approach, walk for 5 minutes at a flat or 0 grade, then 5 minutes at 5 percent grade, followed by 5 minutes at 10 percent grade. Finish up by going back to the 5 percent grade before a cool-down period at 0 grade.
You can also adapt the vest and use of incline to interval training. After a warm-up, walk at a 10 percent grade for 2 minutes, then at 0 grade for 4 minutes. Repeat the sequence for up to 30 minutes.
Remember that if you haven't exercised in some time, check with your doctor before starting any routine.
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