Regular exercise is recommended to keep you in tip-top shape. But that doesn’t mean you have to hit it in the gym or buy sports equipment so you can work out at home. There is a simple way of getting on the route to better health — and it’s by walking.
Yes, taking a stroll everyday can keep you fit, whether it’s just a 15-minute trip to the neighborhood store or a short hike uphill. Studies have shown that you get great benefits if you walk your way to better health. That includes increased mobility, strength, endurance, and flexibility, as well as the maintenance of your ideal weight.
Walking also reduces the risk of heart diseases by lowering your blood pressure and increasing “good” cholesterol levels. It also lessens the risk of diabetes, as walking lowers the levels of your blood sugar. Certain cancers, like colon and breast cancers, can be averted just by walking.
It’s not just physical benefits that you get from doing this activity; your mind gets relaxed with every stride, too. Walking helps reduce stress and anxiety levels and fight depression because it helps the body release natural chemicals like endorphins, dopamine, and serotonin, keeping you in high spirits. It also reduces the risk, or slows down the progress, of dementia, as repeated exercise stimulates the creation of new brain cells and advances tissue repair.
Enhancing your physical condition by walking is easy, and you can do it any time of the day. From doing errands to going to work on foot, you’re sure to get the advantages of this kind of regular exercise. Try increasing your pace — brisk walking will not only burn more calories but also give your lungs and heart a workout. It’s also valuable that you invest in a pedometer so you can check how many steps you have taken for the past 24 hours. It’s advisable to strive to do 10,000 steps a day to get the full benefits of walking.
Of course, you need to motivate yourself to keep walking. Listening to music as you stride out helps you stick to your routine. It’s also best to not do it on your own; invite your friends and form a walking group to inspire you to reach your goals. Once you’ve attained it, challenge yourself even further. Before you know it, you’re already reaping the fruits of staying fit — and you’re feeling better about yourself — because you’ve walked your way to better health.