Arnold Schwarzenegger‘s dedication to health and wellness at 76 continues to inspire fans around the world. In his latest Arnold’s Pump Club Newsletter, Schwarzenegger promoted the benefits of walking, especially fast walking for improved cardiovascular function and increased longevity.
Despite his reputation of once being the world’s best-built man, Arnold Schwarzenegger admits it’s been difficult to maintain his physique in retirement. For that reason, he recognizes that remaining healthy and staying active are paramount factors to his youthfulness.
During the golden era of bodybuilding, Schwarzenegger made a name for himself as one of the best with balanced shoulders, huge arms, and a slim waist. Before exiting the sport for more fruitful ventures, Schwarzenegger managed to win a total of seven Mr. Olympia titles (1970–1975, 1980). While building his legacy, ‘The Austrian Oak’ proved himself against legends such as Sergio Olvia, Frank Zane, and Franco Columbu.
Even though he’s found success as an actor and governor, Schwarzenegger’s love for fitness grows with each day. He routinely offers nutrition and workout advice in his newsletter. This time, he’s advocating for walking regularly, a practice he believes is critical for the preservation of health.
Arnold Schwarzenegger Says Fast Walking Can Increase Lifespan
According to Schwarzenegger, faster walkers tend to live longer than their slower counterparts.
“We often share how being stronger helps you live longer. And while muscle is an important piece of the puzzle, it’s not the only one.
Research also suggests that fast walkers live longer than those who can’t maintain a decent pace.
One study of more than 50,000 people found that the ability to move faster reduces your risk of cardiovascular disease by more than 50 percent after age 60. Earlier research suggests that slow walkers are three times more likely to suffer from cardiovascular disease. And yet another study discovered that for every one meter per second faster you can move, you see an increase in lifespan.
However, this doesn’t mean you need to start speed walking. The minimum threshold appears to be maintaining a pace of at least two miles per hour, with additional health protection occurring the faster you move.”
Despite the commonly heard goal of 10,000 steps daily, the 76-year-old said most people can see a ‘significant increase in longevity’ with just 8,000 steps daily.
“It’s why we frequently recommend walking. And while the goal of 10,000 steps per day was a made-up number, research does suggest you’ll see benefits with as little as 3,000 to 4,00 steps per day, and see a significant increase in longevity up to at least 8,000 steps per day.”
Aside from walking, Schwarzenegger also tackled protein and whether quality ultimately matters when one is trying to build muscle. The bodybuilding legend shared that quality isn’t as important as ‘you’ve been led to believe.’ Moreover, Schwarzenegger said it’s okay if people consume protein that doesn’t have the highest absorption rates.
When he’s not offering wisdom, Schwarzenegger is pushing his body with exercise. He recently joined bodybuilding icon and eight-time Mr. Olympia Ronnie Coleman for a special training session. With 15 Olympia titles between the two, the workout served as an unforgettable moment for fans.
Longevity is a top priority for Schwarzenegger, who continues to give back after a one-of-a-kind career. He credits the health protection offered by walking fast daily, which he says can reduce cardiovascular risks by 50% after age 60.
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- Studenski S, Perera S, Patel K, et al. Gait Speed and Survival in Older Adults. JAMA. 2011;305(1):50–58. doi:10.1001/jama.2010.1923