Woman walking in ankle-length black leggings with blue flower print and solid blue high-waisted, waist band by designer ImagineByAstra

What Is Better, Running or Walking?

It’s easy to observe that we have evolved to use walking as our primary way of getting around otherwise running would feel more natural and be easier. Although both are excellent activities that promote fitness, the human body was built to be a lean mean walking machine. Walking not only maintains muscle, tendon and joint health it is also a workout for the internal organs. All systems, including the heart and digestive system, run smoother when a person is walking regularly. And a lesser known system, the lymphatic system, which deals with infections and toxins, requires motion to work. So walking is a whole body workout and maintains overall health.

That said, the human body was also made to run. Everyone has those times when they need to run to catch a flight, race over to the play set before their child falls, run to catch a meeting, etc. Running as a regular workout activity develops the muscles, lungs etc. for this activity and maintains the body’s ability to run when needed.

So perhaps we could reframe this: one is not better than the other - both are necessary. As far as choosing which one for a workout that is really up to you. We are walking all the time anyway, some feel there is something missing and yearn to add running to their lives. For some people running improves sleep, immunity and mental state. And for others walking or hiking ticks these boxes. From my experience as a hiker and long distance runner, running is always easier when I’m in shape from walking. In fact all physical activities and sports are easier when one has a solid foundation of walking first. With all the hiking I did I never had to train much for a run. So don’t underestimate getting in your steps. And if you want to add in running you’re only enhancing your fitness and rounding out your capabilities.

*Disclaimer: As always, consult your doctor before starting a new activity*

Choosing the right clothing is just as important as the sport

While walking, running or working out one should choose comfortable clothing that doesn’t restrict movement and that wicks moisture. Our skin was made to evaporate sweat to regulate body temperature during times of activity so ensure your clothing allows this process to occur. Look for athletic clothing with a label that says “moisture wicking”.

Both loose fitting and tight fitting activewear offer performance so it is really a matter of personal choice when it comes to fit.

For women, a sports bra is an essential piece of activewear. The ideal sports bra provides support and comfort during a workout and should be fitted so that compression is felt but not discomfort. The focus should be on the activity at hand and not on the sports bra. Again, look for a sports bra that is moisture wicking.

At the end of the day the best sports wear is the sports wear you don’t notice you’re wearing, it moves with you and keeps you dry and comfortable throughout your workout. 



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