Walk the Dog Workout

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I’m a huge fan of walking for exercise (How to Create a Walking Habit), but sometimes, it’s nice to mix up my working workout and make it a little bit more challenging.  For the last few weeks, James and I have been doing the Walk the Dog Workout.


(Yes, Maggie’s collar has a matching I <3 James tag.)


The trouble with dog walkin’ for exercise, of course, is that doggies like to stop and sniff and pee and poop all.. the… time (especially boy dogs).  It’s hard to keep my heart rate up while James stops to smell the roses. That’s where the Walk the Dog Workout comes in.


What does this workout entail exactly?  Well, obviously, you need a dog!  You also need a 15-foot retractable leash.  Begin by setting off on a 2.0-mile loop.


Every time the pooch stops to sniff, do walking lunges until you run out of leash.  Then, tell your pup to hurry on up and start walking again at a brisk pace.


Depending on how much your dog likes to stop and sniff (and I always let James stop to smell stuff… it’s the best part for him), the lunges can add up fast.  I alternate between regular walking lunges and side-to-side lunges. Every now and then, I stretch instead of lunging.


When your dog stops to bathroom, do squats.  I’ll also do static squats against a tree or telephone pole, if we happen to be near one.


I end up completely drenched by the end of our 2.0 mile walk – I must do DOZENS of lunges and squats!


Optional: Come home and do bicep curls with your 17-pound lazy dachshund who would rather stab herself in the eye with a squeaky toy than walk 2.0 whole miles. 


The Fitterati Blog Awards


Healthy Tipping Point is up for a Fitness Magazine award for Best Healthy Living Blog.  I have loved writing this blog for the last 3.5 years and sharing my life with you all.  I would so appreciate a vote!


You can browse all the nominees – in categories like Healthy Eating, Running, Weight Loss, Inspirational, and Personal Trainer – and discover new blogs to read here.  Happy blog browsing!



  • Sana March 10, 2012, 4:38 pm

    I adore Maggie.

    • JenATX March 13, 2012, 10:10 pm

      ditto! and what a great idea with the lunges. also a good way not to get annoyed with the dog haha

  • Ashley @ My Food 'N' Fitness Diaries March 10, 2012, 4:44 pm

    loving this workout idea! our dogs stop to sniff and pee pleeennty to give me a quality workout according to this plan. especially between the two of them. 😉

  • kathleen @ the daily crumb March 10, 2012, 4:52 pm

    i’m definitely a fan of the walk the dog workout. kills two birds with one stone!

  • Lisa (bakebikeblog) March 10, 2012, 5:05 pm

    best of luck for the competition!

  • Katie @ Soulshine and Sassafras March 10, 2012, 5:18 pm

    I love their matching tags!!!

  • Claire @ Live and Love to Eat March 10, 2012, 5:27 pm

    Your blog is one of the few on that site actually about healthy living – a very fitting nomination! Very creative “workout” – I think my neighbors would think I’d gone crazy if I did squats and lunges around the neighborhood!

  • Teri H March 10, 2012, 5:56 pm

    You are adorable pregnant!!!

    • CaitlinHTP March 11, 2012, 12:13 pm

      Thanks Teri 🙂

  • Sara March 10, 2012, 6:09 pm

    This would work well for my small dog who is always sniffing and marking! Our other dog is trained to heel on our left side and not get ahead of us. I trained the small dog and my husband trained the other ha

  • Stephanie C March 10, 2012, 6:15 pm

    Such a great idea! I only walk/run with my dog because she makes me feel safer in my neighborhood but she slows me down SO much. I walk/ran about 1 mile in my neighborhood yesterday and it took about 15 minutes! That was how long it took me to WALK a mile in high school! Wah. Lunges is the perfect idea.

  • Kelly March 10, 2012, 6:57 pm

    Love the bump!

  • Shannon March 10, 2012, 7:20 pm

    Good luck! You have my vote!

  • Lee March 10, 2012, 7:27 pm

    This is a great idea. My dog has to stop and sniff everything (and then pee on it). My legs would definitely get a workout.

    Just voted!

  • Stephanie @ Legally Blinde March 10, 2012, 7:45 pm

    I don’t have a dog, but this is such a creative idea for a workout!

  • Helene @healthyfrenchie March 10, 2012, 7:52 pm

    such a great idea! I usually try to do assisted push ups or tricep dips when I see benches. Or I’ll squat/ lunge / jup every 20 steps until a certain lanmmark

  • Adrienne March 10, 2012, 8:01 pm

    Why didn’t I think of this?!! Off to do a doggie workout now!

  • Linda @ Lemons March 10, 2012, 8:42 pm

    Great workout! My dog always stops to sniff, and i never thought to do lunges and squats. I wonder what the neighbors would think.

  • Kamaile March 10, 2012, 9:08 pm

    This is great idea. You look great!

  • Christine @ BookishlyB March 10, 2012, 10:07 pm

    I so want to do that for my dogs! So cute, and they really do love each other 🙂

  • rushfit March 10, 2012, 11:06 pm

    You good great! Keep it up!

  • Shelley March 10, 2012, 11:21 pm

    Great workout idea! I usually run so I don’t take our dog. She’s older and can’t keep up. But she does like to walk so I think I might add some walks on my rest days and take her with me!

  • Clare March 11, 2012, 5:27 am

    SUCH a great idea! Thanks for sharing 🙂

  • Kierstan @ Life {and running} in Iowa March 11, 2012, 8:47 am

    If I did this workout, I would be doing walking lunges my entire 3 mile loop!

    Congratulations on being nominated! A lot of my favorite blogs are on that list.

  • Therie March 11, 2012, 9:58 am

    This sounds great! I am going to try it this week with my pups!:) Thanks so much!

  • Katie March 11, 2012, 10:40 am

    Great workout idea! Did this with my miniature schnauzer this morning and ended up with 100 lunges and 25 squats in 2 miles… she likes to stop and sniff 🙂 Thanks for the motivation!

  • Aylin @ Glow Kitchen March 11, 2012, 10:48 am

    That’s such a creative way to optimize a dog workout. Love it! Now I just need a dog.

  • Amber K March 11, 2012, 2:13 pm

    What a great idea! I don’t have a puppy, but I hope to one day.

  • Katie @ Peace Love & Oats March 11, 2012, 4:24 pm

    I LOVE this! what a creative way to change a situation! I always find walking my brother’s dog frustrating. She’s a 7 month old golden and of course has to smell EVERYTHING. this is a great idea!

  • Dynamics March 11, 2012, 11:33 pm

    Am I the only one who takes a dog for a walk and we walk. No sniffing allowed. Dog stays by my left side. He can pee and poo in his own yard (on command I might add). Guess it is the guide dog trainer in me.

    • CaitlinHTP March 12, 2012, 7:19 am

      Please come train my dogs 🙂

  • Finding a skinnier me March 12, 2012, 2:08 pm

    I really really love this idea. I have never thought of this. Luckily I found a park that lets me walk the dog off leash, so if she stops and sniffs I can just walk past. But when I do walk her on the leash I find that it is hard to keep up the heart rate, so you can see why I love this idea!!!!

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