Although walking may not seem like exercise because we do it every day, it has a vast array of health benefits. This everyday activity that most of us don’t even think about is actually very powerful. Unlike many other exercises, there is no equipment, training or experience necessary. You don’t even need to schlep to the gym if you don’t want to. Outdoors or in, this is as easy as it gets to significantly reduce and prevent certain ailments and increase overall health. You can’t hurt yourself or over-do it so why not start now?
Walking positively affects numerous physical conditions along with mental and emotional issues. A good walk gets your heartbeat up, exercising your cardiovascular system. As your blood is pumping hopefully you can warm up enough to sweat some toxins out in the process. You get a chance to stretch your body and let oxygen into your system, which is good for red blood cells and muscles in preventing cramps. Of course, exercise in general, especially cardio, will burn calories and promote a healthy weight. Walk it off and be sure to drink plenty of water to stay hydrated and flush your system.
As far as mental health, walking can directly target stress and anxiety. Sometimes people just need some space and fresh air to calm down and feel relaxed. When someone is cramped up in an office all day it is very refreshing and renewing to go for a walk after hours and refocus for the evening, or maybe an after dinner stroll. Yes, everyone is stressed and everyone has a different way of handling that. It is important to understand how detrimental stress can be for the body and mind. Stress can single-handedly make certain diseases worsen and mental and emotional problems peak. Adding stress to any situation is only asking for trouble. The reduction of stress can directly impact the effectiveness of certain treatments or medications for any issues you may be dealing with. Stress affects everything and it is not something to be taken lightly just because it is so common. Walking clears your mind and may even put things in a new perspective for you. Afterward, you should feel refreshed, focused and ready for whatever comes next.
What’s more refreshing than a nice Autumn walk? There’s no excuse not to try it. Make walking a routine and schedule it into your week, before you know it you won’t even think about it- you’ll just put your shoes on and go. Grab your iPod or a walking buddy to keep you motivated and hit the pavement! Go put your sneakers on, grab a water bottle and enjoy the colors of the season!