Walking is good for you, that’s official. The thing is, realistically it’s the perfect way to exercise, just about anybody can do it, you don’t need special equipment, you can fit it into your day without too much effort (try walking to work for a change!), you can go on your own, with a dog or with a friend (good time to catch up on the latest gossip). The health benefits of walking really are plentiful.
Health Benefits of Walking.
Still not convinced? Ok, let’s be a little more specific shall we. Walking between 30 – 60 minutes every day can:
- Reduce your risk of heart disease by around 30-40%, breast cancer by 20% and diabetes and stroke by up to 50%.
- Lower blood pressure.
- Increase cardiovascular endurance.
- Reduce symptoms of depression and anxiety.
- Help with weight loss and reduce body fat.
- Maintain lean muscle.
- Reduce joint swelling and pain accompanying arthritis
- Make you feel good!
According to a study in 2005 by “Archives of Internal Medicine”, walking can also help you to live longer. They discovered that 30 minutes of walking each day can add 1.3 healthy years to the average persons life, not a bad trade is it, because not only will you live longer but you’ll be happier too.
The Scientific Bit about Walking
OK, let’s look at this scientifically. Walking is what’s known in the trade as a low-intensity work-out, which means that your body will burn calories first, and then burn off fat. Actually, if you want to lose a few pounds and build up muscle (and who doesn’t?) then walking is actually a better option than jogging or doing aerobics.
Low intensity exercises such as walking burns off around 5-8% of protein (muscle), 70% in carbohydrates and 15% in fat. Even after you’ve finished walking your body still burns off this fuel, so you’re still burning fat even after you’ve stopped walking.
OK, now that we’ve established that there are more health benefits of walking than you could shake a stick at, let’s realistically look at how you can incorporate walking into your day.
- If walking to work isn’t an option, then why not park a little further away than usual and walk the remainder.
- If you generally go to work by bus, jump off a couple of stops sooner and walk the rest of the way.
Buy a dog, they love walking.
- Walk somebody elses dog, they really are good company.
- Don’t just sit at your desk over your lunch break reading glossy magazines and dreaming of the perfect figure, get out for a walk, it’ll really help you to focus for the rest of the afternoon.
- Wondering how to spend your Sunday mornings? Drive somewhere nice and then go for a walk.
You see, anybody can do it and it really is one of the best, and easiest ways to improve your life.