Find Your Baseline Fitness Level (And Then Walk With Us!)
We all know that exercise is crucial to health, but sometimes it can be hard to find something you like to do and stick with a routine. Our simple solution? Walk. It’s nature’s oldest form of exercise: it’s good for you, it’s hard to hurt yourself, and it can be as challenging or easy as you need it to be.
Our wellness guide offers a simple solution for finding your baseline fitness that requires no fancy exercise equipment, expensive trainers, or gym memberships. It’s especially important these days, because, in many areas, gyms are closed and group fitness options are limited. Below, we review this simple system, and offer a fun community activity to help you stick with it.
We want you to be able to see improvements in your fitness: that can be one of the most gratifying parts of coming up with a routine. To find your baseline, follow these 4 simple steps:
- Find a hill in your neighborhood that is a minimum of 1 mile long (you can use your car or an online map program to confirm the distance), with a steadily rising upward slope. If you’re already in a decent physical condition, then the steeper the better!
- Get a good night’s sleep, eat a light breakfast (such as a piece of fruit with peanut butter or a bowl of cereal), and get yourself to the bottom of the hill.
- Start the timer on your phone or your watch and walk (not run!) as fast as you can for one mile uphill. Stop your timer. This is your baseline time. Walk easily back to the start.
- Repeat this workout as often as one time per week and record your time to see your fitness improve. Try to keep your routine the same (#2 above) and always start and stop your watch at the same locations.
Now, in order to see changes over time, you have to stick to a routine. Looking for a walking routine with an end goal? We would like to invite you to join a community of others who are working on keeping their immune systems in tip-top condition while also helping to support a worthy cause.
Every year in June, PCF and MLB join to raise prostate cancer awareness and funds with the Home Run Challenge. This year, with no home runs to count, we are offering an opportunity to “Walk the Bases.” We are challenging people to walk 41.5 miles in June. (If you’re wondering how we came up with the 41.5 miles, it’s equal to the distance covered by the 609 home runs hit during last year’s Home Run Challenge campaign.) Many of us can’t be in our normal routines right now, but the help of a virtual community can keep you on track.
Whether you join the challenge or not, keep walking up that hill! Don’t worry if you get slower one week or even two weeks in a row – it’s all about changes over time, and these are not short-term fixes, but lifestyle changes. On the other hand, if your other weekly workouts are effective and you feel yourself getting in better shape, you can choose a longer and/or steeper walk and start a new baseline.
To join the private Facebook group for Walk the Bases and get your sign-on gift, request an invitation by sending an email to firstname.lastname@example.org. In the group, we will share tips, give away prizes (including one-of-a-kind MLB paraphernalia for the baseball fans among us), and inspire each other to get fit… all while raising money for life-saving prostate cancer research
Ready? Set? Go.