Adults need at least 150 minutes of cardiovascular exercise per week.
If you're trying to burn fat, you most likely want it to happen as fast and as effectively as possible. Walking for two hours is an effective way to burn excess calories and reduce your body fat percentage. However, the American Council on Exercise points to research showing that exercise on an empty stomach does not increase the amount of fat burned. The good news is, there are other techniques you can implement during your two-hour walks that optimize and increase the amount of fat and calories you burn.
Fuel Your Workout
According to ACE, research conducted by the Strength and Conditioning Journal in February of 2011 shows that regardless of the contents of your stomach, the amount of fat you burn during exercise will be the same. In fact, when you exercise first thing in the morning without eating, your muscles will be low in glycogen, which is the stored sugar your body needs for fuel. This adversely affects your performance, so ACE says to eat a very small meal of easily digestible carbohydrates such as a little oatmeal or a slice of toast to fuel your two-hour walks.
You have probably heard that slow paced, long cardio sessions put you in the fat burning zone. Even the cardio machines at the gym have a "fat burning" option. According to ACE, this is one of the biggest exercise myths. Fat burning during exercise is extremely complex and involves lots of mathematical calculations. To simplify it for you, ACE says that maximum fat burning occurs at moderate to high intensity exercise. This is because total calorie expenditure is also calculated into the equation.
To get the most out of your two-hour walks, vary your intensity level by adding in hills or increasing your pace. Try one-minute bursts of high intensity followed by two to three minutes at a more moderate intensity. At the higher intensity level, you are blasting calories at a much faster rate. You can add hills and pick up the pace regardless of whether you are doing your walks outside or on a treadmill. This technique will help you burn the most fat and calories possible during your workout.
Safety and Tips
Consult with your doctor before you begin an exercise program to make sure your heart is strong enough for physical activity and to determine if you have any blood pressure issues or other health concerns.Always warm up before exercise by doing the same activity at a much slower pace for approximately five minutes. Stretching is better during and after your workouts rather than before.Including a healthy eating plan along with your exercise sessions will help you see results more quickly. If you are trying to lose weight you need to consume slightly less calories than you expend, so shoot for a 200 to 300 calorie deficit daily. It takes a 3500 calorie deficit to lose one pound of fat.