Walking to Warm Up

Walking is the most natural of all exercises. It can also be one of the most — if not the most — enjoyable exercises. Walking doesn't require any particular expertise, either; it gives everyone the chance to be physically active.

If you have the time, make walking a prelude to every yoga-with-weights workout. You don't have to hike to the top of Mt. Everest — a short walk of 10 to 20 minutes will do. Getting in a walk daily or every other day has all kinds of benefits for your body and your mind. And if you combine walking with the other short warm-up exercises we describe in this chapter, you'll be well prepared for your yoga-with-weights workout. The combination of walking and yoga with weights as a daily and/or weekly workout program enhances the quality of your general health and mental well-being. It also helps keep your weight in check.

In the following pages, we explain the benefits of including a walk in your daily warm-up routine. We also explain how to walk properly to take stock of the world around you and the world inside you and how to prepare your body for a workout.

We recommend walking outside in nature, weather permitting. If you can't walk outside, a treadmill in your home or gym works well. Put all your walking clothes by the door so you're ready to get up and go before your workout. Because footwear is important, buy walking shoes that fit well (see Chapter 2 for some advice about buying walking shoes).

Fluids are essential if you want to take longer walks. Be sure to bring along water if you plan to walk for any length of time. (Chapter 2 looks into the particulars of staying hydrated as you exercise.)

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