Level 1 Fitness Walking Program

Well done!

Coming to our Level 1 Fitness Walking Program is a great first step.

You'll find this program right for you if:

  • you have trouble walking 30 minutes a day.

Senior Women Walking With Cane and Nurse
  • your doctor told you to start walking.
  • you're ready to graduate from your rehab exercise program.
  • you've decided it's time to 'get up off the couch'.
  • you walk a bit now but want to 'start from the beginning' just to be safe.

Your Health Goal

In the Level 1 Fitness Walking Program, your goal is to walk 30 minutes a day and at least 150 minutes a week. Your risk of heart disease is reduced at this activity level.

Track Your Walks

Stay on track by recording your walks in a simple log or journal. (right click to download). Jot down your route, date and time. You can track your progress easily this way. It feels good when you can see your improvements in writing.

Make It A Habit

Walk at least five days out of seven - even if you have to reduce your time some days, This is really important!

Work first to increase your walking time. As you start feeling stronger, you can work on increasing your speed.

Take It Easy

Senior Couple Walking in Forest

Take it easy when you start out. Our Level 1 Fitness Walking Program is all about taking your time. Go at a pace that doesn't hurt you, but does challenge you.

Make it an enjoyable experience. You're walking toward a healthier lifestyle.

Level 1 Fitness Walking Program

IMPORTANT: Do your warm up and stretching exercises BEFORE and AFTER every session.

Equally important even as you are just starting is to wear good, padded socks. They will make a world of difference in your comfort.

SPECIAL NOTE: We've included a Pre Week 1 Program for those that find it hard to even walk at all right now. Start here if you have trouble even walking across the room. Baby steps are great steps too!

Walking 15 minutes a day now? Go straight to Week 1.

    Pre Week 1 Program
Senior Woman Walking With Cane
  • Start with walking a distance you can do now - 10 paces, 20 paces, across a room, to the front sidewalk. Do what you can - once each way. Go as slowly as you need to.
  • Walk every second day until you feel strong enough to do it once every day
  • When you can do this every day, then increase your distance a bit - 2 paces, 5 paces,whatever works for you. Don't overdo it!
  • Walk this way for three days, take a day off then walk for 4 days, take a day off and then repeat
  • Slowly increase your paces or distance until you can walk 10-12 minutes a day* or 60 minutes a week/
  • When you feel ready for it, try the Week 1 schedule.
  • And remember to give yourself a pat on the back when you get here. Great Accomplishment!
  • *NOTE: Take as many weeks as you need here to reach this walking time. No rush. Don't try and do it all the first week!

    Week 1

  • Start with a daily 15 minute walk.
  • Walk at an easy pace throughout this level. Don't rush things!
  • Walk five days of the week. Build a habit of consistency.
  • Spread out your rest days. For example make day 3 and day 6 a rest day.
  • Weekly total walking goal - 60-75 minutes.
  • Week 2

  • Add 5 minutes a day for a 20 minute daily walk
  • Walk five days a week. continue building your habit.
  • You may extend yourself some days and follow it with a rest day.
  • Spread out your rest days as before
  • Weekly total walking goal - 75-100 minutes
  • Week 3

Middle  Aged Woman Walking on Path
  • Add 5 minutes a day for a 25 minute daily walk
  • Walk 5 days a week. Work on building your habit.
  • Try extending yourself some days followed by a rest day
  • Spread out your rest days.
  • Weekly total walking goal - 100-125 minutes.
  • Week 4

  • Add 5 minutes a day for a 30 minute daily walk
  • Walk 5 days a week. Continue to build your habit
  • Try extending yourself a bit more some days, followed by a rest day
  • Spread out your rest days.
  • Weekly total walking goal - 125-150 minutes

Bumps In The Road

Our Level 1 Fitness Walking Program is all about getting you to start walking again, step by step. If you find a week is a bit too difficult right now, don't push yourself. Repeat the last week. Move on only when you feel comfortable.


Senior Couple Walking and Holding Hands

By now you've already come a long way with your walking - from 60 minutes a week (or less) to 150 minutes a week. And now you can do that comfortably.

Congratulations! You've done it! You've completed your Level 1 Fitness Walking Program.

Time to move on to our Level 2 Fitness Walking Program!

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