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2013 Readers' Choice Awards - Walking

Walking Gear and Top Walks

By

Updated October 02, 2013

Welcome to our third annual awards for the best in walking gear, shoes, treadmills, walking tours and walking routes. The prize is bragging rights.

2013 Walking Readers' Choice Awards

About.com Readers' Choice Awards 2013
About.com © 2013
For our third annual Walking Readers' Choice Awards, we have 15 categories of walking gear, events and tours. We took nominations from Jan. 14 until February 11, 2013. Our walking experts chose up to five finalists from among the nominees for each category. Readers voted from Feb. 19 through March 19 with winners announced March 27. The polls were audited and validated by our tech team to produce the final results: FAQ on poll validation. You can see more categories across dozens of About.com topics for Readers' Choice Awards in technology, products, services, web sites, blogs and more.

Best Fitness Walking Shoes: Prospecs

Prospecs Power Walk 604
Wendy Bumgardner ©

This category includes shoes for brisk walking workouts and walking races. The winner, Prospecs, is a new line of shoes from Korea. They have designs for all kinds of fitness walkers, including stability shoes, cushioned shoes, and shoes designed for fast walking. They really worked their social media to get out the vote. I previewed a pair of Prospecs last year and found their Move Frame technology to give a pleasant walking experience.

Best Comfort Walking Shoes: Terox

Terox Flip Flops
Terox ©

The Readers' Choice for 2013 are Terox recovery flip flops. Terox are designed with arch support and have an anatomical footbed and a slight rocker heel. They are a world of difference from cheap flip flops that do nothing for your feet. Terox come in fun colors and are recyclable.

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Best Trail Walking Shoes: Vasque Velocity 2.0

Vasque Women's Velocity 2.0
Vasque ©

Some of us like to go off-road for walking. The Vasque Velocity has a sole built for stability and traction on uneven natural trails. The sole is designed so the toe is slightly off the ground, giving you more clearance over trail debris. The uppers are lightweight for breathability. The women's version has a woman-specific fit, while the men's version comes in widths. They also have a GTX waterproof version.

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Best App for Walkers: Virtual Walk

Lincoln Monument - Virtual Walk App
Virtual Walk LLC
I'm waiting for an iOS version of this great app. It's currently only available for Android via Google Play. Enjoy your usual walks -- outdoors, indoors, on your treadmill -- and track along on a virtual walk in a scenic or historic place. Give your fitness walks a purpose and make them more interesting.

Best Pedometer: Walk4Life MVP Pedometer

Walk4Life MVP Pedometer
Courtesy of Pricegrabber

Beyond just counting steps, our 2013 winner lets you check your daily progress towards getting enough moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA). Health authorities recommend at least 30 minutes per day, but with this pedometer you can set your own goal and input the pace you need to achieve a higher heart rate. This pedometer also allows you to choose when to reset the step count total. If you want to track a specific workout rather than all-day steps, it's your choice.

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Best Activity Monitor / Linked Pedometer: FitLinxx Pebble

FitLinxx Pebble
FitLinxx ©

Activity monitors are getting smarter and smarter each year. You can wear the Pebble on your waistband or shoe, or just carry it in a pocket. It's small and stylish. Indicator lights tell you how you are progressing towards you daily goal. Then when you get in range of your computer, it transmits the data wirelessly for you to view. Then you can go online to see your activity stats and history.

Best Home Treadmill $1500 or Less: LifeSpan TR 1200-DT Treadmill Desk

LifeSpan TR 1200-DT Treadmill Desk
Courtesy of Pricegrabber

Study after study is saying that, even if you get in a workout each day, sitting too much raises your health risks. Use a treadmill desk while you work, catch up on social media, watch TV or play games. Turn sitting time into productive, active time.

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Best Home Treadmill $1500-$3000: True M50

True M50 Treadmill
Courtesy of Pricegrabber
The True M50 has a powerful 3.0 horsepower motor, yet a smaller footprint to take up space in your home gym. It features heartrate-controlled "cruise control" workouts and is compatible with Polar wireless heart rate monitor straps.
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Best Home Treadmill Over $3000: True ES900

True ES900 Treadmill
© True Fitness

What treadmill would you have in your home if money (and space) were no object? The winner for 2013 was the True ES900. It has several console options so you can pick the one that suits your dream home gym the best.

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