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As you can see from her photos, Senior Supermodel Oleda Baker is aging magnificently. I interviewed Oleda back in December.
She is a treasure trove of information on everything this blog stands for, namely weight control, healthy living and healthy aging, so I asked her if she would share some of her ideas with us. She has written 10 books on beauty and health. Her latest, written at the age of 75, Breaking the Age Barrier – Great Looks and Health at Every Age – was released in November 2010 and is available from Amazon or from her website www.oleda.com where she also sells her own line of health and beauty aids.
Walking is a workout with no disadvantages. Anyone can do it, with zero chance of injury. You can walk practically anywhere, either alone or with a friend or family member. It’s free! It requires no special equipment.
Walking can also be a great aerobic workout for training the body’s cardiovascular system. It can help reduce body fat. Walking tones and firms the hips and thighs, and develops the calf and shin muscles better than running. While running can tend to make the leg muscles look bunched up and contracted, walking tones the entire length of the muscles and helps them stay long. Walking is good for the mind as well as the body.
As with all forms of exercise, correct form will enhance the effectiveness of the walking workout. Good posture allows you to move quickly. Stand erect when walking to protect the lower back and improve your abdominal strength. Hold your head up. The foot action is a heel strike followed by rolling onto the ball of the foot and pushing off the toes.
Swing the arm from the shoulder and shorten its angle to 90 degrees to move faster. The faster pace may feel hard to hold at first. Your shins may fatigue, too. Make a goal of walking 2 to 3 miles three times a week minimum. Treadmill counts.
If you are not used to walking don’t overdo the speed for the first week … build up to it. Toward the end slow down and stroll for the last 5 minutes so that you do not stop abruptly.
Gradually increase the distance each day and walk faster until you’re walking at a steady brisk pace.
Keep up the regimen. You’ll be amazed at how good you’ll begin to feel in a short time; and at the end of six months, you may not even recognize yourself … AND … you have kept your body intact from the hazards of body injuries that can be caused by jogging, running and jumping rope, injuries that are directly related to the impact of repetitive stress on ligaments, tendons, joints, and the lower back. Remember, the force of running puts between three and five times your body weight on your feet and ankles … walking puts much less stress on the entire body.
Editor’s Note: As is usually the case, I agree with Oleda’s ideas. I have written about the benefits of walking numerous times. Herewith an incomplete list:
What about walking poles?
Can walking cut chocolate cravings?
What are the benefits of walking and bicycling?
Walking, not Sudoku for seniors
National Walking Day
What is Mall-Walking?
How healthy is walking?
How good are treadmills?
How to add some exercise to my day?
Seeing The Girl With The Dragon Tattoo as exercise
How much should I exercise?