Jump Start Your Fat Loss Issue 2 - The Importance of a Daily WalkPart 2 - Movement and the Importance of a Daily Walk
by Rob Cooper
I don’t think that any good fat loss program would be complete
without talk about movement. By movement, I mean exercise, but
for this specific issue of Jump Start Your Fat Loss, I’ll be
talking about walking.
I have spoken with many other nutrition and fitness mentors and
from all reports and feedback from their participants / clients
or subscribers, the number one piece of negative feedback is
about the amount of information and or the complexity of the
Keep It Simple
Our body was meant to move. Our oldest ancestors were hunter
gathers, our more recent ancestors did not have access to cars
or motorized transportation, and until just a few short years
ago respectively, we farmed our own land and had to walk to
school (just ask your parents or grandparents!). We were
moving our bodies in every respect. We worked, toiled the land,
walked to school, to the towns or even to our neighbors. We
spent more time on our feet moving about and doing chores. Now
we’ve succumbed to mechanical devices, elevators, cars,
escalators and hire maids to do our housework. We have to get
back to some very basic movements, and for the next few weeks or
months during the rest of this series of articles on Jump Start
Your Fat Loss, we’ll be employing and enjoying the very basic of
movements – walking.
I began walking when I was at a weight of nearly 400 pounds and
kept at it for over six years. I walked when it was 40 degrees
Celsius (104 degrees F), and when it was -40 degrees Celsius
(-40 F). One particular day that I was bundled up in multiple
layers of clothing and finished my walk, a neighbor commented
“nothing stops you from your walks does it?”.
I walked 20 minutes every day after work and some days did it
twice a day, both morning before work and evening after work. I
kept up this routine while I was making changes to my food
program as well and both complimented each other.
I got results and you can too.
Walking provides three immediate healthy functions
1. It increases the amount of calories burned
2. It provides a healthy stimulus to the heart
3. It helps move the lymph system
There are more than that of course, but they’re 3 good ones to
start with for now.
Walking is also associated with cutting your risk of heart
disease, breast cancer, colon cancer, diabetes and stroke.
Walking not only burns calories while you walk, but also raises
your metabolism for a period of time afterwards. The amount of
time afterwards is open for discussion, but nobody disputes the
fact that yes, we burn calories even after we stop exercising.
In the theme of keeping it simple, I’ll give this example:
I’ll give some rough numbers (and yes, they are rough and are
provided for example only).
Lets say that in a 20 minute walk we were to burn 300 calories.
Lets say those 300 calories were from calories burned during the
walk, plus the additional calories burned afterwards because
your metabolism was raised for a length of time following, I
could guess a number so I will – lets say another 200 burned
after walking as a result of your metabolism raised during the
300 calories burned times seven days equals 2100 calories.
With 3500 calories needed to burn a pound of fat, we are at
about 60% of the way to burning a pound of fat in a week. 52
weeks times 60% = 31 pounds of fat burnt in a year by only doing
a 20 minute walk per day.
And… that does not include the other 200 calories burned after
Now, before I get a ton of email regarding my numbers, let me
once more say that these numbers are for example only. The idea
is that by simply adding in some movement, we can make a change
in our body shape and size. The amount of calories burned
changes based on multiple variables including the fact that our
body will adapt to the new exercise change and we’ll have to
adjust our walking to compensate for the adaptation.
I opened my browser this morning and found an article about
walking on MSN
Does Walking Really Work?
By William R. Sukala, MS, CS
Q: I am now on maintenance, and I walk 30-40 minutes four-five
times a week. Is this amount of walking as effective as other
exercises in maintaining weight loss? Running just seems too
hard on my joints.
A: This is an excellent question. First off, it's important to
understand that the human body adapts to just about everything
you throw at it, including exercise. When you exercise, your
body adapts to become fitter. If you do nothing, your body
adapts to become less fit. So exercise should always be one step
ahead of you in order to maintain the training stimulus. Think
of it as dangling the proverbial carrot in front of the horse.
That said, the exercise you're doing is most impressive. But
remember, your body will adapt and the training stimulus will
mildly diminish in comparison to when you first started. Don't
let this discourage you, though. To keep this stimulus fresh,
you might benefit from altering some of the training variables
(duration, frequency and intensity, or type of exercise). For
example, try adding an extra 10 minutes onto your walk, or pick
up the pace a little bit so that you walk farther within the
same 30-40 minutes.
It's said that variety is the spice of life, and that also
applies to exercise. If running is a bit harsh on your joints,
don't do it. Try out some of the other modes that are nicer on
the knees — e.g., bicycling, swimming, elliptical trainers, a
rowing machine, etc. But no matter how you slice it, just
remember to keep exercise fun.
- end article –
I found this to be true as well.
When I began walking, I measured my heart rate using the finger
against the throat method. I counted beats per minute so that I
became aware of my fitness level and I noticed that as I walked
more, my heart rate came down.
I became more fit.
I was increasing my cardiac functioning
I was improving the strength of my heart and lungs
You can do the same thing.
What I decided to do was to purchase a set of those ankle
weights, the ones that wrap around your ankles and come in 1
pound, 2 pound increments.
I added the weights to my ankles before I began my walks and my
heart rate went up again and I was able to trick my body into
having to work harder.
I was burning fat and you can too.
Eventually, I got to the point where I had to add 2.5 pound
ankle weights to my ankles and then used the one pound ones on
my wrists. I began to carry 5 pound metal dumbbells and did
bicep curls, hammer curls and reverse bicep curls, all adding to
the resistance, building more muscle and burning more calories.
Walking is very meditative
Walking is peaceful. Use the time to go over your thoughts for
the day, but make them the good thoughts. Remind yourself about
the changes you’re making to your food program, why you’re doing
it, what your goals are and why you want to continue to make
healthy choices. If you’re walking in the morning, you can use
the time to plan your day. If you’re walking in the evening,
you can remind yourself about your wins for the day. Your wins
are all the good things you did, the positive changes you made
that are helping you achieve your goals. You can use the time
to say affirmations to yourself or if you’re of a spiritual
nature, you can use the time to pray for yourself or others.
It’s valuable time – use it in a positive way.
If you’re not so inclined, go ahead and get an MP3 player and
listen to music, or better yet, listen to CDs that teach you
something. There are tons available and I can recommend a few
Walking does not give you the option to eat the calories you
just burned. That is a trade off my girlfriend uses. She and a
friend walk to the Gelato store and their justification for
eating Gelato is the walk. Mind you, it’s a 5 mile walk, but
still, for the purpose or you achieving your fat loss goals,
consider the walking as a way to increase your metabolism and
don’t think of trading the calories for food.
Raising your metabolism to any degree on a regular basis is more
important than counting the calories or doing the math I did
Just do it, get out and get moving!
Now that you’re out walking for 20 minutes every day, remember
to breath. Walking is also about adding oxygen to the blood.
Where there’s oxygen, there’s fire and that fire is burning fat.
Also, with that oxygen is a feeling of euphoria. Our bodies
need oxygen in the blood and while you’re out walking, focus on
Here’s a snippet from an article by Dennis Lewis of Authentic
Breathing on the subject
“Deep breathing, when it is easy, natural, and necessary, can
have a beneficial influence on our health and well being. To
understand how this happens, we need to remember that the
diaphragm is attached all around the lower ribcage and has
strands going down to the lumbar vertebrae. When our breathing
is full and deep, the diaphragm moves through its entire range
downward to massage the liver, stomach, and other organs and
tissues below it, and upward to massage the heart. When our
breathing is full and deep, the belly, lower ribcage, and lower
back all expand on inhalation, thus drawing the diaphragm down
deeper into the abdomen, and retract on exhalation, allowing the
diaphragm to move fully upward toward the heart. In deep,
abdominal breathing, the downward and upward movements of the
diaphragm, combined with the outward and inward movements of the
belly, ribcage, and lower back, help to massage and detoxify our
inner organs, promote blood flow and peristalsis, and pump the
lymph more efficiently through our lymphatic system. The
lymphatic system, which is an important part of our immune
system, has no pump other than muscular movements, including the
movements of breathing.”
Tao of Natural Breathing: For Health, Well-Being and Inner Growth
Dennis mentions the lymphatic system, “…is an important part of
our immune system, [and] has no pump other than muscular
Point #3 above was about this very fact.
Harvey Diamond, Author of Fit For Life, Fit For Life 2 plus many
others including his most recent release “Living without pain”
was the first to bring the importance of the lymph system to my
Harvey, in his most recent book “Living Without Pain” describes
the lymph system as “… the body’s garbage collector”. He goes
on to say, “The lymph system is a truly astounding network of
glands, nodes, nodules, vessels, and fluid, and its sole job and
function is to keep you alive, well and free of pain.”
When I first learned of the Lymph system and realized that
walking was the easiest way to help pump this system, I became
very clear in my head about what I wanted to accomplish from my
daily walks. I began to breathe deeply and move my arms as
well. I visualized this system pumping and cleaning my body.
Harvey Diamond says “… the lymph system is the heart and soul of
the immune system and in terms of whatever health goals we might
have, it’s hard to imagine anything more important than taking
care of our lymph system to the best of our ability”.
On page 105 of his book Living Without Pain, Harvey states “…
the symptoms of Fibromyalgia, Lupus, Arthritis, and Chronic
Fatigue Syndrome are the direct result of uneliminated toxins.”
Listen to my full 1.5 hour interview with Harvey Diamond
Walking, weight training, pure clean water, elimination of junk
foods, eating nothing but fruit until noon each day and other
natural health principles being outlined in the next few issues
all contribute to the elimination of wastes in the body.
This is the very same reason I choose to use Sunrider Foods, to
drink our cleansing beverage Fortune Delight and Calli Tea each and
every day and will continue to do so for all the rest of my days.
There are lots of ways to raise your metabolism namely walking,
cycling, swimming, elliptical trainer, recumbent bike, hill
walking, stair climbing, stair running, weight training…. The
list goes on.
The most important thing to remember right now is to keep it
simple and take action.
Get out and get moving, regardless of your size
If 20 minutes seems out of reach, then start with 5, and here’s
my advice on not having the time or motivation: on the days you
don’t feel like doing 20 minutes, at least get out for 5 with
the agreement that if you feel like it after 5, then continue.
More often that not, you’ll continue past the 5 minutes. I use
this same plan with my weight training. I know that if I don’t
feel like it now, I go to the gym anyway and after a warm up, I
know I’ll be in the mood to do more. Of the top 10 training
sessions I’ve done in my life, at least half of them were on the
days I didn’t want to be there but went anyway.
Walking in the morning on an empty stomach
How much truth is there to the question about doing cardio on an
empty stomach? In a recent report released by Jon Benson as
bonus material for his book “Simply Eat” released last week, Jon has this to say.
“Fasting cardio rules, as long as you abide by the rules of
“For those of you not familiar with the concept, cardio done on
an empty stomach, assuming you do not have issues with low blood
sugar, forces the body to tap into fat stores much more rapidly
than working out on a full stomach. This is due to the fact that
the body must burn through a lot of blood sugar prior to tapping
into body fat for fuel when fully fed. When you first get up in
the morning, blood sugar is very low, and hitting your cardio at
this time takes advantage of that fact. You burn fat, and you do
it much faster, performing cardio on an empty stomach, first
thing in the morning.
There some caveats to this. Check out the variables:
low-carbohydrate dieters really rock the house on cardio, as
your blood sugar levels are already low, generally speaking. So,
for the most part, low-carbers burn more fat during cardio
sessions...or more accurately stated, people with lower levels
of blood sugar and lower triglycerides, a form of blood fat
increased by carbohydrate consumption, will burn more body fat
Also, the speed to which you burn through blood sugar no matter
what type of nutrition plan you follow can be greatly impacted
by caffeine, L-Carnitine and other ergogenic aids. We’ll cover
that aspect in a moment.”
Jon was offering his book “Simply Eat” for the low price of $5 for the first 5555 people who got it. It’s now being offered at
$10 and the quote above is from the bonus material provided with
the book or at no cost just by filling in a form. From the
feedback I’ve gotten from readers who got in on this deal,
they’re more than happy with the information.
Do I do cardio on an empty stomach? Whenever I can. I do not
do Boot Camp on an empty stomach as there is way too much demand
of my resources and I feel that I need fuel before I do that
kind of output. Any other day, yes, I do my cardio in a fasted
1. Continue to eat only fruit until noon each day as outlined in
part 1 of this series
2. Walk 20 minutes each day and focus on your breathing.
Use the time to go over your wins from the day, or use the time
to plan your day and remind yourself of your goals.
You may notice some cleansing symptoms or signs as your begin to
pump the lymph system during walking. Pay attention to them and
know that it’s all good and a very positive thing. I say
“better out of you than in you” if you know what I mean.
Lets revisit my two buddies who are taking action on their weight
I followed up with Stacey yesterday to find out where he’s at
and what he’s been doing since the first issue of Jump Start
Your Fat Loss. Stacey still has not weighed himself but is
using the “how my clothes fit” approach. He says his clothes
are becoming looser and he’s feeling more comfortable in them.
Stacey has cut pop from his diet, is choosing to drink water and
Sunrider Fortune Delight as his beverages of choice. He had his
boss install a water cooler in his office where he works as a
shipper / receiver. Stacey is somewhere around the 300 pound
mark and dropping. He has cut his junk food, packs his lunches
and is following the fruit in the morning rule. He has been
eating granola bars as his snacks along with raw veggies such as
carrots and celery. Stacey has begun walking 40 minutes per
day. He and his girlfriend go for a 20 minute walk and then
turn around and walk back. I asked him what his goal was for
the next 6 weeks and he has said that his goal is to drop 10
pounds of fat in the 6 weeks. Stacey is taking a very relaxed
approach to his fat loss and I think it’s an incredible example
of what can be done just by taking action and not giving up.
Stacey has taken action. He has decided he’s doing something
about his weight and is taking steps towards it.
I coached Stacey on his granola bar. I have recommended that
there is still too much sugar in it and a better replacement
would be a can of tuna along with the veggies. This one change
could be the next jump in his success. Adding a little more
protein in the morning / noon meal in the form of tuna with his
veggies for the next 6 weeks if not more could easily facilitate
the drop of 10 pounds of fat.
Picture of Stacey with permission
Turtle has joined me in the latest installment of my club’s 6
week Boot Camp. He and I are participating in a three times a
week 6am hour and a half fitness program that includes running,
navy seal type drills, stair running and core work. In addition
to this, Turtle’s goals include swimming on his off days from
Boot Camp, weight training two times a week in the evenings and
continuing to walk 40 minutes at least three times a week. His
goal is to drop 15 pounds of fat in the next 6 weeks. He is
being very specific about the fat part as he wants to build
muscle. Turtle broke the 300 mark recently and is weighing in at
296. Turtle bought his Tanita body fat scale and is measuring
his progress. He drinks Sunrider Fortune Delight beverage along
with Sunrider Stevia product in place of pops or colas and other
non nutritional beverages. Turtle is taking a very active role
in his fat reduction and has not only made changes in his food
program, but has now kicked it up a BIG notch with his
commitment to lots of exercise. Personally, I believe he’ll
burn a lot more fat than 15 pounds in the next 6 weeks at the
pace he has set out for himself.
On the recent poll I sent out, Turtle’s comments were as follows:
“Hey Rob to get to where I'd feel comfortable not wearing a
shirt in public, namely the Drop Zone, 50-100 pounds would have
to come off. I know that my energy level would be increased and
that I would look great. But most importantly I would have my
health back to where it should be and that is what I value the
most right now. Getting healthy and living a long time to
skydive in as many places as I can.”
Turtle has a great “WHY”
To be healthier, to feel better about himself and to live longer
so he can skydive.
Picture of Turtle with permission
If you have missed the fist part of this series, it’s been
posted on my website here:
Jump Start Your Fat Loss Issue 1 - Fruit In The Morning Until Noon
Tags: walking for Exercise