500 Miles: 7 Benefits of Walking For Fitness
These days, most people who live in a big city attend a gym, pool or recreation centre in order to exercise. Some may have treadmills, exercise bikes or home gym equipment, but many dismiss the benefits of simply walking to get places. The modern human is a time-poor creature and many people would claim that they don’t have the time to walk places or take a stroll simply for the sake of it. But going for regular walks has some incredible physical and mental benefits and shouldn’t be overlooked as a great form of exercise.
On For Young and Old
There aren’t many forms of exercise that can facilitate the needs and abilities of a wide range of people, but walking is a simple form of exercise that small children through to the elderly can share in. Going for a walk is a great way to connect with someone while getting some fresh air out in the open. And if you haven’t walked with a toddler before, take a small family member for a walk. They will open your eyes to all the simple pleasures and wonders of the world (just be prepared to take a little longer).
Walking Aids Weight Loss
People who take the option of walking over driving short distances, or incorporate a decent walk into their regular commuting habits, have a much higher chance of maintaining a healthy weight. A few simple changes in your daily routine can make a world of difference, so opt to walk.
It Won’t Interfere With Your Training
We’ve all seen buff and ripped bodybuilders walking on a treadmill at the gym and wondered what on earth they were doing. But walking is the easiest and most beneficial way to improve your physique and shed some unwanted fat without messing with your hard-fought for muscle gains. A brisk walk with incline intervals is best, so kick it up a gear and find a neighbourhood with lots of hills.
It Won’t Stress Your Body
When looking to drop some fat, many people turn to HIIT workouts, metabolic conditioning or running, but these activities put a fair deal of stress on your joints. Combine a few sessions of high intensity cardio training with several days of heavy lifting each week and the body can very quickly become overtrained, which can lead to fatigue and injuries that will set you months back in your training. Walking, on the other hand, adds very little training stress to the body and will in fact help with your recovery.
Improve Your Circulation
Walking helps to improve blood circulation and brain health by pumping oxygen and nutrients around the body while lowering cholesterol levels. Walking is often a time when people come up with solutions to tasks they have been mulling over. If you are stuck at work, or finding yourself conflicted or irrational at home or the workplace, going for a walk is one of the best things you can do to think about a situation clearly and come up with the best, rational answer.
It Eases Joint Pain
This may seem illogical for people who suffer from arthritis and joint pain, but, according to studies, walking regularly can even help to stop arthritis from forming in the first place. Walking helps to protect the joints from developing issues by keeping them lubricated and developing the surrounding supportive muscles.
Improve Your Digestion
Improper digestion can lead to gastrointestinal complications, so it is important to keep your digestive system healthy. This is achieved through eating a well balanced diet and exercising regularly. Walking after a meal can be great for the digestion system as it is a form of low impact exercise that promotes blood flow without putting the body under too much stress.
In the end, you need to find activities that you enjoy doing if you are going to maintain a healthy physique. Walking is one of the most enjoyable forms of low impact exercise there is, so eat well, train regularly and take the time to get some air. You might just be surprised at the results.
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