Actor Kareena Kapoor recently posted about completing a 5-km walk indoors. So we got experts to share how to create your home-bound walking workout
Make sure to end your workouts with stretches. Representation pic
With gyms closed, and streets and parks declared off-limits to joggers and walkers, many fitness lovers have pressed pause on their exercise routines and resigned themselves to the comfort of their couches. However, as actor Kareena Kapoor Khan recently demonstrated by completing 5K steps indoors, getting your fix of exercise — whether walking or jogging — while confined to your home isn’t an impossible feat. “Even if you lead a very sedentary lifestyle, one of the easiest ways to stay active during the lockdown is by walking. Walking activates your muscles and increases your heart rate. This, in turn, improves your cardiovascular fitness, helps with muscle and joint stiffness, and reduces your body fat,” explains Avinash Mansukhani, a body transformation specialist and founder of Fight The Sunrise Fitness.
Kareena Kapoor completed 5k steps indoors during the lockdown. Pics/Instagram
“You could either march on the spot or make use of an available stretch of floor within your house to walk up and down,” says Benafsha Gazdar, exercise scientist and founder of Benercise. Make sure to warm up with a few stretches and then march on the spot. Gradually increase the pace. You could also add more intensity to your workout with toe taps, high knees and jumping jacks.
Gazdar has created a cardio workout that only takes four tiles — from your starting position, step forward to the tile in front of you. Next, step sideways and then to the back tile. Finally, step into your starting position. You could increase the speed and move clockwise and counter-clockwise. This routine also increases your stability, she adds.
“Start with 30 or 45 minutes every day for a week. Once your body gets used to this workout, you will need to challenge it. In the second week, add an extra five minutes to your walk every three days. If you have a step counter, increase your steps by 100 every day. Once you’ve reached your time limit, add brisk walking to the mix. You could do 30 seconds of brisk walking, and one minute plus 30 seconds of walking at your normal pace. Cycle this through your workout. Keep increasing the intervals of brisk walking and decreasing the normal walking intervals every few days. Eventually, you’ll be able to add a slight jog or spot jog to the mix, or may even be able to add ankle weights to your routine,” says Mansukhani.
To ensure that you stick to your walking workout, Mansukhani suggests setting aside a scheduled time every day and asking a family member to be your walking partner. He also recommends wearing shoes that will offer support and cushioning, thus minimising the risk of injury. Make sure to hydrate well before, during and after your workouts, he says.
>> Make sure your walking form is correct. Look straight, keep your shoulders back and don’t slouch. Slightly engage your core, swing your hands, cycle your legs well, and step from heel to toe.
>> Don’t forget to stretch post your walking session, especially your calves.
>> Make sure you are breathing evenly through your workout.
>> Seniors can place a chair beside them for support or walk next to a wall.