Journal: exercise

Stretching exercises

I’ve put a few easy stretches together to try at home. If you hold a stretch for less than 20 seconds, it doesn’t really do too much for you – try to hold for 30 seconds to keep your muscles supple. Over one minute will elongate the muscle and over 2 mins will help to relieve tight/chronic fascia as well as muscles.

September 24, 2020

What’s the deal with speed walking?!?

What’s the deal with speed walking?!?


I’ve always laughed at the idea of speed-walking. The bum-wiggling I saw in the Olympics looked a little ridiculous and walking fast is easy, right?


That was until I read about the benefits of speed walking on improving conditioning and thus running speed in Tim Ferriss’ brilliant book ‘The 4-Hour Body’.


In fact, the more I researched into speed walking, the more appealing it sounded as an alternative to one of my weekly runs – an easy-on-your-joints way of increasing baseline fitness (conditioning), improves core strength and co-ordination, working you in the ‘fat burning zone’ (and I defo need that after Christmas) and easier to add into life than running as not much forward planning is needed – have a rucksack and trainers, can walk anywhere! It’s also a great way to train yourself in an up-right position (heel-strike long-distance running can result in the head and shoulders stooping forward while this is a much more upright positioning more similar to barefoot running so great for your posture)

So, I decided to get a speed walk session in each week.


My challenge is based on the session described in the 4-hour body, though as I have no running track and I’d like to try and add it in to my home-ward journey after a class, I’ve changed it slightly.


You literally walk as far as you can in 15mins, sounds easy huh?!


I have downloaded the fabulous Run-keeper app on my iphone and all you do is switch it on and it’ll tell you how far you have gone. Or try it on the treadmill (with a 1% incline on).


I did my second session yesterday. The first session was ok – quite easy and pretty boring – I did it on the treadmill which wasn’t ideal but I had 15mins to kill before a class so I thought why not. In the first 7.5mins, I walked 0.70km so I tried to go faster for the second half of the session and I managed to achieve 1.59km total.


The second session upped the challenge – I was outside in Battersea Park. I must say at first I felt very self-conscious and silly. I was sure everyone was laughing at me and my swinging arms as I marched, however, I just kept reminding myself how this was going to improve my racetime so they will all be laughing on the other side of their faces soon (and if you walk fast enough you’re gone before they even see you – POW)! I got so into it – though I must admit you are DESPERATE to break into a run, it gets pretty tough and the minute I hit that 15min mark I took off in the nicest feeling run I’ve had in a long time… Anyway, this time I managed 1.75km in total. I know I could’ve gone faster, I can’t wait to try again, I don’t think I can wait a whole week for another try….. it seems I have got the speed-walking bug!


Three times per week is the recommended amount for an improvement in conditioning and I can’t wait to see the difference it makes, I’m hooked.

Maz x



Why 15mins for speed and power training?

Walking fast means you will live longer…

More on the health benefits of speed walking .





January 6, 2020