Forward me to a friend – If you know someone who would enjoy Healthtree News, please send us along. They can sign up for Healthtree News here.

HeartWalk Workout

HeartWalk Workout


The HeartWalk Workout is a special activity program developed by the Heart and Stroke Foundation to help people with cardiovascular problems get regular, healthy physical activity. It has been approved by healthcare professionals and is widely used in Canada. Before starting any physical activity program, check with your doctor first.

When to start:
Start off slowly. Follow the program just as is. At first, resist the urge to walk longer. If you overdo it, you may feel sore and tired afterwards and get discouraged.

If 10 minutes is too much to start, walk just five minutes. You may continue to follow the program by adding five minutes to your walking as it progresses. Keep track of your progress on a calendar or in a daily journal.

How it works

Weeks 1 and 2: Walk every second day.

  • Walk 10 minutes
  • Set an easy pace the first week, go a little faster the second week.

Weeks 3 and 4: Work out four times a week.

  • Walk 10 minutes
  • Set a little faster pace
  • Speed up and go further the fourth week.

Weeks 5 and 6: Work out five times a week.

  • Walk briskly for 25 to 30 minutes
  • Start to pump or swing your arms
  • Walk up gentle hills; lean forward a little when going uphill.

Workout tips

  • Find a walking partner. Keep each other motivated!
  • If the weather is too hot or cold, walk in a mall instead.
  • Match clothing to weather. If it’s cold, layer clothes. If it’s hot, wear light clothing.
  • If you’ve had open heart surgery or a heart attack, ask your doctor about a cardiac rehabilitation program.

Program goal

Build up your exercise tolerance until you can walk at least 30 minutes, five times a week.

Feeling great? Build up to an hour!

Courtesy of The Heart & Stroke Foundation