Walking Workouts: 9 Myths and Facts to Know

Many individuals use 10,000 steps as a daily target, but Amy Bantham, DrPH, CEO and founder of Move to Live More, a health and fitness consulting organization, says this statistic came from a marketing effort, not science.

Myth: Walking 10,000 Steps a Day Is Ideal

According to the American Diabetes Association, exercise helps muscle cells absorb glucose from the circulation for energy, lowering blood sugar in the short term and maintaining insulin sensitivity.

Fact: Walking Helps With Blood Sugar Control

Most exercise improves mental health, although walking alone cannot treat a psychiatric illness. Walking affects mood? Most individuals are sensitive, or stressed, says Michael Fredericson, MD, sports medicine physiatrist, doctor, and surgeon at Stanford Medicine in California.

Myth: Walking Can Cure Depression and Anxiety

Bantham believes walking is a low-impact workout that releases endorphins, increases blood flow to the body and brain, and improves bone health without straining joints. Fredericson argues walking is safer and simpler for the general population than running.

Myth: Running Is Always Superior to Walking

Wall said daily walking is appropriate since it's low-intensity. He said, If you think about any population in a US city, these walkable cities, people are walking every day. The advantage is that most individuals, provided they don't have previous illnesses, can do it regularly.

Myth: You Shouldn t Walk Every Day of the Week

Any exercise burns calories, but working out harder burns more. That applies to walking. Bantham believes weight and body composition determine calorie burn in an exercise.

Fact: You Must Walk Faster to Burn More Calories

Wall suggests walking 30 minutes a day, five days a week, to meet the HHS Physical exercise Guidelines for Americans' 150 minutes of moderate aerobic exercise.

Myth: You Have to Walk 30 Minutes Continuously to See Health Benefits

Silent walking is just walking without interruptions. No podcasts, phone calls, or walking playlists. Silent walking is said to let you think alone and practice movement meditation.

Fact: Silent Walking Is Good for You

Outdoor walking include elevation variations and green environment, unlike treadmill walking. Differences may matter: One research indicated that "green" exercise being outdoors in nature helped hoofers up their average heart rate compared to indoor walking.

Myth: Indoor and Outdoor Steps Yield the Same Results