Walk the walk: striding your way to fitness
For a lot of people, fitting regular workouts into their daily schedule is not always feasible. Sufficient physical activity, however, is an essential requirement for our overall physical health. One way to get some good exercise is by doing something simple and free that we usually take completely for granted: walking.
It’s more than just an essential activity we do to get from point A to point B. When done with the right frequency and effort, it’s a great way to stay fit. How so? Read on and learn how valuable it can be for your wellbeing.
Walking is great cardio
Brisk walking is an excellent form of cardio workout. While we mostly associate cardio with running, there are similar benefits to be gained from walking. Of course, you’ll need to spend a bit more time to get the same burn you would in a run, but it keeps adding up, and it won’t harm your knees and joints!
According to most studies, the average American typically takes little more than around 3,000 steps per day. Try and increase this by climbing stairs instead of taking the elevator. Take a trip to the mall or the supermarket and make sure not to park right at the entrance! This can easily add a few thousand steps to your total. Most experts set the healthy daily target at 10,000 steps. Try to see if you can build up to reach that level each day.
The easiest way to keep track is by downloading one of the many free pedometer apps available for your phone. That way you’ll have a great updated record of your step total every day.
There are many documented studies on the benefit of sufficient walking on health and longevity. Achieving a sufficient step total on a consistent basis will have a great beneficial impact on fitness and health.
Walking is accessible, and it’s free
Many people with expensive gym memberships find that they tend to neglect them or use them only sporadically. With an easily achieved change in routine, walking can become the most accessible form of exercise out there. You don’t need a dedicated trail. All you need is a backyard, a patio, a relatively quiet street, even an office corridor, and you’re set to go. Walk around the mall on a Sunday and do some window-shopping and you’ll tally a few thousand extra steps in no time.
Walking provides a nice change of pace
Sometimes we spend too long sitting at the desk, in front of our computers doing work, studying or just plain browsing. Take a break every now and then and walk around. It allows you to switch things up and get your body moving and fosters better health.
Making walking part of your day at home or at work helps prevent s descent into the sedentary lifestyle which is one of the main causes of chronic illness
Walking prevents injury and illness
Medical evidence shows that regular physical exercise, like sufficient walking, can help you steer clear of things like heart disease and diabetes. So, it’s really best to do what you can to prevent their occurrence. What better way is there to avoid these serious chronic conditions than to stretch your legs and take an enjoyable walk!
You can reap these benefits in as little as a total of 30 minutes of daily walking. Remember also, that it doesn’t all have to be done at once. You can break it up into shorter periods over the day, and every step adds up. Of course, as mentioned before, more steps or longer durations will help you more.
The bottom line
Consider adding walking to your daily fitness routine. Walking is a very low-key physical activity. It is low-impact and safe for everyone and at every age. The great pity is that is so often taken for granted. Even if you have a very tight schedule, you can easily add a couple of short walking sessions to your day. These will all add up and do wonders for your health. So, try to integrate walking into all your daily activities and keep yourself more active during the day.
When you walk the walk—quite literally—you’re on your way to a healthier, fitter life.