Walking with Ankle Weights
Ankle weights are beneficial for a number of different activities, including walking. Wearing ankle weights when walking integrates strength training into the activity as well as boosts its aerobic challenge. The added weight helps increase heart rate, expenditure, and intensity of everyday activities such as walking to the store. Increasing energy expenditure is what intensifies your respiration rate and heart rate, both which give a direct impact on your cardiovascular and pulmonary health. By using ankle weights when walking on a frequent basis, you can increase your ability to exert yourself longer and improve overall endurance.
Burn More Calories
Using ankle weights while performing any type of physical activity will increase your energy expenditure and positively influence the number of calories burned throughout your workout session. Calorie burning follows a simple formula – the more energy that you expend, the more calories your body will burn. For individuals trying to lose weight, the goal is to create what is referred to as a calorie deficit, which is necessary to shed unwanted pounds. A caloric deficit is the number of calories you need to eat in a day which is lower than the number of calories you require to maintain your current weight. Exercise can help contribute towards your caloric deficit by burning a number of calories each time that you workout. Once a caloric deficit has been created, your body is forced to tap into its fat stores to get the energy that it needs.
Ankle weights can help improve your overall range of motion when added to any workout routine and are especially beneficial for when you are practicing toning exercises such as leg lifts. The ankle weights add enough resistance to make the movement more challenging while still being safe and not straining your muscles. For toned, strong legs, add ankle weights to your leg mat exercises.
It is also shown that using ankle weights helps to improve balance. The muscles in your ankles help to maintain the overall balance of your body and strengthening them by using ankle weights helps build and support the necessary muscles to properly support your body and maintain balance. As a side note, make sure to stretch and warm up your muscles before adding ankle weights to your workout.
Using ankle weights during your fitness routine increases resistance to the activity that you are performing. Resistance while exercising is important as it improves your overall strength. Ankle weights create resistance benefits when used during leg toning exercises, leg raises, calf raises and running. Ankle weights will not make you run faster but it will help to strengthen your core and lower body which as a result may lead to improved endurance and better running times.
To add variety to your workout routine, ankle weights are an excellent choice. By using ankle weights on certain days of your activity will help provide a higher level of challenge. It is important to properly stretch before using the weights to avoid causing strain on your ankle muscles and ligaments. Also, it is good to alternate the days that you use the ankle weights in your fitness routine to allow for proper rest and recovery of your muscles. Ankle weights are great for cardio exercises and can also be used with water aerobic activities, helping to make even the simplest of movements into engaging strength training exercises. It is important to always switch up your fitness routine to avoid reaching a plateau and to keep it interesting so that you stay motivated. For example, if you typically run three times a week and go swimming twice a week, use the ankle weights during two of your runs and one of your aquatic sessions.
What to Avoid
Avoid using ankle weights every time that you workout to allow your muscles the proper recovery time that they need. Also, if you are suffering from a joint problem or tendon injury, do not use ankle weights until your injury has properly healed. Always start with a low weight ankle weight and gradually increase the weight as you gain strength. Starting with too heavy of a weight can strain your muscles and result in you not being able to use the weights properly.