>Here's some background. I'm 30, have high *** pressure and am
>overweight (probably by about 20-25 lbs.)
>I have some questions with regards to walking/running and was hoping
>here might be able to help or point me in the right direction. My goal
>is lower my *** pressure and lose the extra weight.
>1) Someone told me to walk/run first thing in the morning... get up,
>cold glass of water and do it. They said it burns off about 100
>calories just heating up the cold water inside your body. Sounds
>reasonable, but is it true?
The error has been described already.
>2) When IS the best time to walk/run (with regards to eating
>know it should be convenient for me, but timing isn't a problem right
>now, there are several times throughout the day I could do it. Is it
>better to do it just before I eat (so I'm burning old calories like
>someone told me), or after I eat (seems to me that calories are
>calories and this wouldn't matter... but what do I know?! LOL)
In all seriousness, exercise when you're most comfortable doing
so. Or, maybe more to the point, exercise at a time or on a schedule
that you're most likely to hold to consistently. Getting out
consistently is vastly, vastly more important than any weird
little effects that might exist for this time vs. that time.
(Most claims for these effects turn out to be erroneous. Yet
another reason to go for consistency.)
Calories are indeed calories. New vs. old doesn't matter,
'fat calories' vs 'sugar calories' doesn't matter. Do some
good, healthy exercise and burn off calories. Your body doesn't
>3) What should be my target heart rate to get to while walking/running
>and how long should I do it while at that rate?
Since you have health issues prompting you to ask the question,
talk to your doctor before implementing anything you see here.
In general, effort level is what to work with rather than heart
rate. Be conversational (a few words at a time conversation), for
about 30 minutes as you're getting started.
>4) Is walking very fast better than jogging slow?
'better' ... for what? Depending on exact paces for the racewalk
vs. slow jog, you may well be burning more calories in the racewalk.
But I think the more important question for you is which will do
more for your BP, and I haven't a clue here -- except that getting
out regularly will do you more good than infrequent workouts.
>5) Not a specific question, but does anyone have any other tips that I
>might need to know?
I'll suggest a conservative approach. (I usually do :-)
First thing is, start an exercise log. Record what you do (walking/
swimming/running/biking/weights/...), and how you feel. You might also
record the weather, when you ate, ... Look, every week or two, for
patterns in when you have off days (maybe you ate too soon before
Get yourself a pair of running/walking shoes. If your shoes are
3 years old (like those of a friend recently complaining of ankle
pains), you definitely need a new pair. Get them from a running
shoe store where they make you run in front of them before recommending
Start with getting to 30 minutes of brisk walking on a daily basis.
Actually carry out at least a full week of this before tossing in the
running. Walking is, itself, a good exercise. It is also much less
likely to give you injuries. If this is feeling like effort, don't
do any running until the 30 minute walk feels easy*. In the mean time,
be scoping out what some nice routes would be for when you start
adding running. Call this your research phase.
*Wait for the end of the week before concluding that it was easy.
It's very easy to persuade yourself that today's workout was easy.
And then tomorrow or the day after, you feel the soreness and realize
that it wasn't so easy after all.
Once you're through your research phase, include some running on
every other day -- not every day, every other. The extra
stresses on your body from running will take more than 24 hours
to recover/rebuild from. 36-48 is typical. Go ahead with your
normal 30 minute walk on the non-running days. On the days you
include running -- which I suggest you start with 30 seconds at
a time -- total 20-30 minutes of running+walking. Week to week,
increase the running time, or decrease the walking (recovery) portion
on the running days.
A general thing is to be looking at the walking/running as part
of your healthier new lifestyle -- something you're going to be
continuing for another 50 years. Since you'll be carrying it
on for a good long time, you don't have to race up to doing a
marathon in the next few months. (You need never do a marathon,
or go to a race of any kind.) One purpose of my slow approach
(which is what I did when I started running) is to give you
time to make this a habit before you encounter things that are
difficult. Done perfectly, you never do encounter truly difficult.
You make steady progress, but without hitting walls.
Robert Grumbine http://SportToday.org/~bobg/ Science faqs and amateur activities notes and links.
Sagredo (Galileo Galilei) "You present these recondite matters with too much
evidence and ease; this great facility makes them less appreciated than they
would be had they been presented in a more abstruse manner." Two New Sciences