Changing Walking Speeds May Burn More Calories
Looking to add a boost to your exercise routine and burn more calories? It may be as easy as changing up the pace during your walks.
Two researchers from Ohio State University say that varying your walking speeds can burn up to 20 percent more calories than walking at a steady pace.
The effect of changing walking pace on calories burned is known as, “metabolic cost.” Changing walking speed requires the legs to work harder, explained the researchers, which in turn uses more energy and burns more calories.
Without changing the speed of a treadmill, participants in the study were asked to switch up their walking pace. While walking more quickly, participants would move to the front of the treadmill, and move toward the back when walking more slowly. The study reported that the back-and-forth change of speeds showed a “significantly higher” metabolic rate than constant speeds--an increase between 6 and 20 percent.
The researchers pointed out that changing the treadmill speed would simply result in the treadmill, and not the person, doing most of the work.
Researchers also recommended other ways to add calorie-burning power to your walk, such as carrying a backpack, walking with weights on your legs, or walking in a curve instead of a straight line.