The Big Dilemma: Is Running better than Walking?

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Walking

Among health-conscious people around the globe, there has always been a debate over walking versus running to ascertain which one of these two is the best form of cardiovascular exercise. Due to it’s intense nature, people often choose running over walking as they believe it’s more rewarding, but reports suggest that walking is equally productive and less strenuous than running. Following reasons will tell you why walking is as good as, and sometimes even better, than running.

Walking doesn’t affect your heart and immune system in any bad way

Obesity has become a rising problem among people today. To reduce body fat people often resort to the simple but intense running exercise over the not-so-intense walking exercise, because more quick steps mean more sweating and more sweating means more fat loss. But there’s one big side effect, running affects the muscle tissues which in turn burdens and weakens the immune system. A long run can also have a bad effect on one’s heart, as it elevates proteins like troponin, and an elevated level of such proteins can damage the heart. Unlike running, walking causes no such damages.

Walking

Walking is nearly as effective as running

All of us are well aware with the fact that running reduces the risk of high blood pressure, cholesterol, diabetes and heart diseases. But, according to recent reports, walking is more effective when it comes to fighting the aforementioned diseases. Yes, you read it right! The reports mention that while runners reduced their risk of heart diseases by 4.5%, walkers reduced theirs by more than 9%. Although, walking takes more time than running, the end result is usually the same, sometimes even better.

Walking ensures more distance coverage

When doing exercises in which one has to cover a distance, the main objective should be to cover a longer distance instead of how intensely one does it. While running ensures that one covers the distance quicker than walking, it also tires one faster than the latter. Walking isn’t that much tiring, one can walk for over an hour and still not feel as tired as a runner would after just 10 minutes of exercise. So, walking has an edge over running when it comes to distance coverage. But, there is one thing that walkers should keep in mind. It’s necessary for them to devote more time to their routine as their exercise requires much more time to cover the targeted distance.

Old people walking

Walking is less prone to injuries

Both walking and running are easy-to-do exercises and they also do not invite common exercising injuries such as back pain, neck pain and shoulder pain. But, if you will look at the statistics you will come to know that every year nearly two out of three runners face painful injuries such as Runner’s Knee, Achilles Tendinitis, Hamstring Issues and Shinsplints. The painful impact felt on the body is always high in the case of running exercises. When running, each step produces an impact of three times the body weight on the body. And this heavy impact becomes the cause of bone damages. In contrast, each walking step produces only half the impact of every running step, which means only one and a half times the body weight. And because of this very reason, those people with weaker bones would prefer walking over running. But, even if you have got strong bones you will still be prone to bone and muscle related injuries while running.

Walking does not consume a lot of energy

This one is an obvious fact, but people often overlook it. While running requires high levels of energy bar, walking doesn’t. When you perform a moderate running exercise, you are ought to get tired within just ten minutes, but walking is something which you can carry on for even an hour, and sometimes even more than that. Walking isn’t an intense exercise at all. Even the upgraded form of walking i.e. jogging, doesn’t require high levels of energy. And this is one particular reason why people who are in their sixties and seventies prefer walking. With their energy levels dropping down during that particular phase of their life, senior people resort to walking exercises because of the comfort and fitness they provide without much exhaustion.

Walking is easy and also rewarding

Being a cardiovascular exercise, walking strengthens the two most essential organs of the body: heart and lungs. It also increases muscle and bone strength and effectively improves the stamina. While running also gives the same benefits, walking has the edge because of its ‘easy and comfortable’ nature.

Walking with a dog

Talk and enjoy while walking

When exercising, the intensity of that activity doesn’t allow one to talk with someone, because, well just try talking while you are doing push-ups or while running. You can’t, because it would interrupt the already high breathing rate. But, while you are walking you can easily talk with anyone around you, because walking doesn’t increase your breathing rate, and with a normal breathing rate you can easily talk. Apart of a conversation, you can also analyze and appreciate the beauty around you while you are walking, especially in the morning, because the world is at peace at that time. Also, walk with your dog. It’s great to have a small company with you.

So, if you are looking for a cardiovascular exercise to kick-start your fitness routine then walking is exactly what you need. Start with a 10-minute walk and increase it by a minute everyday. Soon, good health will be knocking at your door. Wishing you a happy walking experience.

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20, English Literature Student and Aspiring Writer

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