We live in a society which is growing ever more sedentary – most of us get much less physical exercise than would have been considered the norm in the past. Widely available motorised transport has been a factor, as has the fact that, for many of us, work consists of sitting in front of a computer screen for eight hours a day. Factor in the fact that food is, relatively speaking, cheaper than ever and both widely and instantly available and it’s perhaps no great surprise that many of us aren’t in as good shape as we might wish to be.
Unfortunately our various labour saving devices, improved transport systems and computers don’t seem to have provided us with any more leisure time in which to pursue activities which might compensate for our low level of physical activity during our normal daily routine. It’s hardly surprising that, after a long day at the office, a commute and completion of a few domestic duties, many people don’t have either the energy or the time to go for a quick jog or to fit in a trip to the gym. It’s a vicious circle and one that can seem impossible to break.
And that’s precisely the situation that Marcia Kilgore found herself in. She was an ex-personal fitness trainer – so there’s no doubt that she knew the value of taking regular exercise – who just couldn’t find sufficient time in her busy daily routine to take as much exercise as she would have liked to. Rather than simply accepting the situation, Ms Kilgore took steps, quite literally, to do something about it.
In partnership with the London South Bank University (LSBU), she came up with the concept for a special range of fitness shoes which, thanks to a specially designed sole, would increase the duration for which the lower body muscles were active during normal walking activity. Independent scientific trials at LSBU and Salford University in the UK have demonstrated that Ms Kilgore’s range of shoes – called Fitflops – increase the time for which the lower body muscles are active by as much as 16% – in comparison with walking in standard footwear.
The net result of this is that wearers of Fitflops can tone their legs and trim their buttocks just by walking around as they would be doing anyway. In addition to the various scientific tests, anecdotal evidence from users also suggests that other benefits, such as reduced joint pain and improved posture may be achievable. The Fitflops range of shoes has also received a seal of acceptance from the American Podiatric Medical Association.
Originally the Fitflops range started life as a collection of sandals – but this has now grown to incorporate boots, slippers and clogs. They are available in a wide range of colours and styles – most of which don’t look very much like exercise shoes at all, so no-one need know that you are getting a free workout while you walk. If you are one of the many who struggle to find time to exercise, then walking to lose weight whilst wearing Fitflops might just be a good option for you to get what is effectively a free lower body workout just by walking around as you would usually do as part of your daily routine anyway.