Walking just 1/2 hour a day has tremendous benefits, from supporting a healthy immune system to boosting your metabolism to strengthening your joints, muscles, and bones - not to mention it is amazing for relieving stress and enjoying a little 'me time'.
1. Walking will improve your mood.
Regular walking actually modifies your nervous system so much that it will improve your mental health and lift your mood, especially when you are out in the countryside. This can be particularly helpful during the colder months, when seasonal depression spikes.
Also, when you make your walks social with a friend or a neighbour that interaction helps you feel connected, which can make you feel happier.
2. It will help you burn calories and maintain a healthy weight.
Regular walking can help improve your body’s response to insulin, which can help you lose weight.
Why not challenge yourself to hit 10,000 steps a day as motivation to keep moving! Daily walking increases your metabolism by burning extra calories and by preventing muscle loss, which is particularly important as we get older.
3. Walking can reduce your risk of chronic disease.
The physical benefits of walking are well documented as walking lowers blood sugar levels and your overall risk for diabetes. Also, regular walking lowers blood pressure by as much as 11 points and may reduce the risk of stroke by up to 40%.
Studies on walking and health have found that those who walked regularly had a 30% lower risk of cardiovascular disease, compared with those who did not walk regularly.
Longer walks are key, just doing a one hour long walk at least once or twice a week can help with disease prevention.
4. Your digestion will improve by walking more.
A regular walking routine can greatly improve your digestion. Walking utilises your core and abdominal muscles, encouraging a health digestion system.
5. And your other goals will start to seem more reachable.
When you become a regular walker, you will have established a regular routine and when you have a routine, you are more likely to continue with the activity and take on new healthier lifestyles.
6. Walking can help you feel more creative.
Walkers think more creatively than the sitters!
7. Boost your energy
Going for a walk when you’re tired may be a more effective energy boost than grabbing a cup of coffee.
Walking increases oxygen flow through the body. It can also increase levels of cortisol, epinephrine, and norepinephrine. Those are the hormones that help elevate energy levels.
8. And it can help alleviate joint pain.
Walking for at least 10 minutes a day or about an hour every week can help stave off disability and arthritis pain in older adults. People that have a good walking routine have better mobility.
9. It can even help you live longer!
The secret to a longer and healthier life involves getting outside and moving. Studies have shown that adults between the ages of 70 and 90 who left the house and were physically active lived longer than those who didn’t. Staying active also helps you stay connected to loved ones and friends who can provide emotional support, which is especially important as you age.
10. And last but not least, you’ll sleep better at night.
If you walk regularly, you’ll sleep better at night than people who are sedentary. Walking also helps reduce pain and stress, which can cause sleep disturbances.