Weight Watchers and the WalkIt! Challenge

Walking is one of the best exercises you can do. It’s low impact, takes no special equipment and is available to you at just about any time, in any location. To draw attention to this versatile exercise, Weight Watchers has declared June 6, 2010 to be National Walk It! day.

The Walk It! Challenge is designed to motivate people towards physical activity and gradually build from “Couch to 5K”. The Weight Watchers Walk It! Challenge began on April 4 and runs through June 5, culminating in National Walk It day on June 6.

On the Weight Watchers website they have a host of helpful information – a 5K database, inspirational resources, support groups and even the option to order customized team t-shirts. If you are a member of Weight Watchers or Weight Watchers Online, you also will have access to a full training guide. In addition, WW has partnered with Road Runners Club of America this year for the Walk-It Day 5K prep, and they’re featuring a list of all the Weight Watchers-sponsored events across the country.

Walking sounds intuitive, but there are some steps that you can take to make sure your efforts are successful. Here’s a wonderful video that lists some excellent benefits to beginning a walking regimen. What are the goals to shoot for as you begin a walking program?

  • Be able to walk a 5K walk (3.1 miles) in one hour or less
  • Improve walking posture and form
  • Finish a 5K walk feeling energized rather than exhausted

Following those guidelines, it’s helpful to break the next month down into specific goals.

  • Week 1 – Start with a daily 20 minute walk. Walk five days in one week, spreading out your rest days.
  • Week 2 – Increase your walking time to 30 minutes, five days a week. Focus on proper walking techniques and form.
  • Week 3 – Add one long day to your walking schedule, 45 minutes.  On the other days, work on increasing your speed. Be certain that you are drinking enough water and wearing proper shoes!
  • Week 4 – Two or three training days, create a longer plan – aim for 60 minutes. By this time, you should be able to complete a 5k!

I was really happy to see that there is already a 5K scheduled in my city on June 6, and I plan to participate. I’d love it if everyone who reads this site would pledge to walk a 5K in their city on June 6. Will you join me?

If you plan on attending the 5k in your area, we really want to see the photos for your walk! Upload yours to Picasa, Flickr, or any other online photo sharing site and place the link in a comment below! As an added incentive, we will choose one lucky person, who will win a three-month Weight Watchers Online trial subscription plus a POINTS pedometer. Good luck!

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