“If you are in a bad mood, go for a walk. If you are still in a bad mood, go for another walk.”
Whether walking to your local grocery store to get cereal for your breakfast or walking away from responsibilities, everyone does a little walking almost every day. Walking is an activity that provides several benefits to an individual both mentally as well as physically. Walking is simple, accessible, and one of the easiest ways to get active and lose weight. Walking is often overlooked as an exercise; however, it is an easy and essential exercise to lead a healthy life. Let us discuss the benefits of walking. (Zaccardi, F., Franks, P.W., Dudbridge, F., Davies, M.J., Khunti, K., and Yates, T., 2021)
A Walk For Your Health:
Have you ever wondered why dogs get so excited when you take them out on walks? Well, walking is an exercise that can elevate your mood and release stress while also serving as an excellent physical activity to maintain good health.
When walking, you carry your weight. This is known as weight-bearing exercise. Some of the benefits include,
- Reduces the risk of heart disease and stroke
- Improves management of conditions such as hypertension (high blood pressure), high cholesterol, joint and muscular pain or stiffness, and diabetes
- Walking can stop the loss of bone mass for those with osteoporosis. One study of postmenopausal women found that 30 minutes of walking each day reduced their risk of hip fractures by 40%.
- Research has found that people who exercise regularly in their fifties and sixties have a 35% chance of a longer than non-walking people.
- A brisk 30-minute walk can result in loss of calories and, in turn, lead to a drop in your weighing scale.
- Studies have found that people who regularly walked in the morning were more likely to relieve insomnia than people who didn’t walk.
- Walking tones your abdominal muscles and legs and even arm muscles if you pump them while you walk
- Walking helps in strengthening your joints. The movement of your joints squishes the joint cartilage, bringing oxygen and nutrients into the area.
- Increases cardiovascular and pulmonary (heart and lung) fitness.
A Step Towards Your Mental Health:
Even Hippocrates agrees that you should walk whenever you’re going through a bad mood. Walking provides various benefits for your mental health. A 15-minute walk can help improve the blood flow and blood circulation in your body which boosts your mood.
Walking has a positive impact on your hypothalamic-pituitary-adrenal (HPA) axis, which is your central nervous system. This is good as the HPA axis is in charge of your stress response. In simple words, walking helps in calming your nerves, which makes you feel less stressed.
Try getting your friends to accompany you on your walks. Walking with another person can have enormous benefits. Walking combined with social interaction can improve your bad mood, help fight depression and improve your self-esteem. (Sinnott, R. and Rowlís, M., 2021)
30 Minute Challenge:
To get the best health benefits from walking, take up a challenge to spend at least 30 minutes of your day walking briskly. Try going on a walk early in the morning to get the best benefits. Here are a few tips to make walking an everyday habit.
- Listen to music when going on walks.
- Take your friend on your walks to keep you company.
- Join a walking group.
- If you can get a pet. It will give you a reason to go on walks.
The Final Step
So don’t just walk away from your responsibility and take the necessary’ steps’ to lead a healthy life. Try going on a walk every day for at least 30 minutes. You will notice a positive change in your mood while also it will help you face the day with more energy. It is very well established by now that walking provides various health benefits to you with little to no extra effort or equipment required. So it is safe to say that walking is a necessary exercise to lead a healthy lifestyle.
So grab your shoes, put on your headphones and head out to take your step for a healthy life.