4 Benefits of Walking for the Mind and Body
Walking is an underrated form of exercise – learn why getting some steps in can be good for your mind and body!
Walking may seem like such a mundane task, but it is one of the most low-key yet beneficial things you can do for your body — especially if you’re in a job that requires staying at a desk for hours at a time. According to the National Health Service, prolonged sitting is linked to slower metabolism and higher blood pressure, among other health risks. You don’t have to be Joe Gym-buff. You just need to stretch your legs now and then. Learning about the benefits of walking might get you moving.
Why You Should Start Walking
Walking doesn’t seem nearly as exciting as or , but it boasts a different appeal. Firstly, it doesn’t look like it requires much exertion – that is, versus , , or even . You can put one foot in front of the other regardless of your fitness level. It also doesn’t require any special equipment, except maybe for comfortable shoes. You can walk on a treadmill or around the block. You can take it as slowly or as briskly as you want.
Despite its seeming lightness, it’s still a cardiovascular activity, which means it can amp your heart rate. As a moderate-intensity, low-impact workout, brisk walking is a terrific alternative for those recovering from sports injuries or with heart irregularities. Since it helps deliver oxygen throughout your body, it can improve blood flow and boost energy levels.
How to Start Walking for Exercise
Do you think you don’t have time to squeeze in a workout every day? You can incorporate walking into your daily routine. If the weather is agreeable, stop your Grab a few blocks from your destination so you can walk the rest of the way. Give your assistant a break and walk to your nearest coffee shop for your caffeine needs.
Take the stairs! Install a treadmill in your office so you can have a quick session during meetings (you’ll find out later why this is beneficial for work). Start a habit by scheduling 10-minute walks after every meal.
While you can walk in practically anything, comfort is crucial. You wouldn’t want to be put off from your newly acquired strolling habit by blisters and burns. Wear breathable, sweat-wicking clothing made from polyester or nylon. Find shoes designed for walking: look for flexible soles and a good arch that offer support.
What Are the Benefits of Walking?
Like all forms of exercise, walking promises physical and mental benefits. Here are some of them:
It keeps the excess fat off your midsection.
If you’re watching your weight, walking is one of the easiest ways to fend off a spare tire. Brisk walking can burn 200 calories in 30 minutes — not a small feat for your daily calorie deficit.
A published in the Journal of Physical Activity and Health also found that walking swiftly three hours a week helped men and women under 50 significantly prevent surplus body weight, a higher body mass index, waist circumference, and fat mass.
A also found that people with obesity-promoting genes who brisk-walk 30 minutes daily cut their risk by half.
It’s a preventive measure against depression.
Walking can put a spring in your step – literally and figuratively. Walking releases happy hormones such as endorphins, putting you in a better mood. A study published in found that an hour-long stroll daily can lower the chances of major depression. You can further reduce this number by as much as 26% for every major increase in physical activity.
It helps you sleep better at night.
Are you having a hard time catching up on quality zzzs? Putting in some steps a day may be the answer for better slumber. Light exercise, such as walking, helps you snooze faster and promotes better sleep quality so that you wake up feeling refreshed and recharged.
Numerous factors explain this. The endorphins you release while walking put you in a better mental state: they beat stress, relieve pain, and make you feel happy, euphoric even. These ease anxieties and worries that may burden your sleep.
Walking in the morning also awakens your circadian rhythm and raises your core temperature, signaling your body to wake up. It works for your bedtime, too, helping induce sleepiness at just the right time.
It helps strike creative inspiration.
Do you wonder why the best minds walk outdoors when stuck in a rut at work? Science has the answer. A found inspiring creativity is one of the benefits of walking. It can boost creative output by 60%. So, if you run out of ideas or feel lost at work, go around the block to jog your brain.
Starting your day with just 30 minutes to an hour of walking can already be good for your mind and body – and after getting a good trek in, keep yourself refreshed and renewed with CLEAR Deep Cleanse Anti-Dandruff Shampoo for Men and Master Facial Wash Oil Control Max. If you’re feeling extra grimy from your stroll, switch it up with POND'S Men Facial Wash Acne Solution.
You don’t need to be a gym rat to be physically healthy. Start moving. The benefits of walking await!