We all know that sports exercises, fitness, jogging and physical activity, in general, can greatly improve our health and also keep fit. But such simple and easy thing, which we do every day, as walking can help with all these too! You don’t have to run miles or take part in a marathon to feel better. And even if you hardly can call yourself a sportsman, only a short everyday stroll will do a great change.
In this article, we will discuss all advantages of walking and we will discover how everyday walking can improve your physical, emotional and mental state. Also, you’ll find a few tips on how to make walking your habit.
Advantages of Walking
Almost everyone, regardless their lifestyle, physical shape, type of activity and social status walks every day. Even short trips from the couch to fridge count. But increasing the amount of walking daily will improve your life significantly.
And there are just a few advantages:
- Daily activity will make you lose excess weight.
- Walking helps to keep fit.
- This everyday habit improves sleep.
- It reduces the risk of heart attack.
- Walking decrease stress.
- Is also improves sexual life.
- And improves mental health as well.
- This physical activity can help in the treatment of depression and anxiety.
- It can perk up the mood.
- In addition, walking reduces the chances of mental diseases.
- It decreases fatigue at the end of the day.
- Also, this daily habit helps to make some time for thinking.
How to Make Walking a Daily Habit
Here are some useful tips that will help you to make walking your everyday routine and also a healthy habit:
Make it enjoyable
First of all, keep it light. It is not a competition and you don’t have to run a marathon, just try to enjoy every minute of walking. You can listen to music while doing your everyday stroll or you can take pictures or you can do it together with your friends. Find some beautiful locations, where you can walk and enjoy the view. Remember that this activity should be pleasurable, that’s why you have to make it as comfortable as possible. Your daily habit should be a positive life change, but I don’t have to bring yourself to do it.
Set a goal
Walking can be much easier and more pleasurable if you set your everyday goal. For example, you can start with only 1 mile and increase the distance every day. Only 5 miles a day (including your way from home to work and vice versa) is enough to keep you fit and healthy.
Achieving small daily goal will greatly improve not only your shape but also your mood.
Do you know about different challenges when people do various tasks or exercises every day during the whole month? Try to do that with walking as well. You need only 30 days to make some activity your daily habit. Walk for a month every day and you will feel positive changes at once. It may be not easy but try to stay determined.
Note down your achievements
You should note down your goals and achievement. It will keep you motivated. You can use anything: smartphone app, notebook, website and so on. It doesn’t matter what you use, all that is important that you keep walking every day. Tracking your achievements helps you to go further and improve your results.
Set a reminder
Set a reminder on your phone to remember about your daily stroll. And you don’t have to allocate hours for this everyday exercise, you can have 5-minute walks during the whole day.
Get a gadget that counts steps or miles
In order to track what distance you walk today, you need special gadget – a pedometer. There are different types of pedometers on the market: from the simple one that will only count miles and steps to the more improved one with a lot of options. Also, you can upload special app on your phone with the same function as a pedometer. All this will help you to follow your success and stay motivated.
Increase the time of your regular walks
Try to make the incidental walking that you do every day longer. For example, if you live near your workplace go there on foot rather than by car or public transport, go to the shops as well, avoid using the elevator, use steps instead. All of these small everyday actions that you do regularly will greatly improve your physical, mental and emotional shape and life on the whole.
Buy appropriate footwear
If you don’t have comfortable, supportive and cushioned pair of walking shoes, you have to buy one, because you are going to walk a lot. A proper pair of sneakers, training shoes and other sports footwear is very important for the health of your feet. Also, the absence of discomfort, fatigue, pain, and blisters will greatly improve the process.
Find a company to walk with
If you are bored to walk alone every day, you can invite your friend or family to join you. Also, the “walking partner” will help you to keep to the plan. If nobody you know is interested, you can find people online who will gladly join you.
Always remember to drink the water before, during and after the walk. Water will improve your overall health and will make walking more productive.
And don’t forget to reward yourself for reaching goals and success.
A Few Ways How Walking Improves Your Health
And now let’s talk how exactly walking can change your life, improve your health and help you to live life to the fullest.
Walking increases the life expectancy
You don’t need to apply great effort to live longer. There is a new study, where scientists claim that everyday walking can longer your life up to 7 years. If you walk just 11 minutes every day regularly, you will add two years to the lifespan. And specialists recommend walking 20 minutes a day. Almost everyone has 20 minutes of spare time every day, so why don’t go for a walk, if it will greatly change your life for the best?
Helps to keep fit
If you want to keep fit or lose weight a little bit, just go for a walk every day. You don’t have to follow some restricting and harsh diets or go to the gym. Not a lot of people can afford it, but walking is a thing that everyone can do. And it is healthiest of the ways to lose some weight.
Walking helps to lose weight
As we have mentioned, walking will help you to lose some weight, but if you have serious plans according to your body, the regular stroll is not enough. But still, it is a good addition to your weight loss program. To have the body of your dream, you need to add intensive training and probably some healthy diet. And regular walking will prevent gaining fat.
As you may know, physical activity can reduce stress and walking is not an exception. It will help you to order your thoughts and set your mind in a meditative state.
Prevention of dementia
Walking can also help you to prevent dementia. The newest studies show that everyday stroll will reduce the danger of dementia to 40%. This exercise helps to release endorphins, keeps brain stress-free and maintains the blood pressure.
Walking works for people with feet problems
Walking has a very low impact on your feet and joint. So, even if you have problem feet, you still can go for a walk every day to stay healthy and fit.
Decreased blood pressure
If you have problems with blood pressure or issues with the health of your heart, walking can help you with this too. This easy exercise keeps normal blood pressure and protects you from various heart diseases.
Walking can protect you not only from problems with blood pressure, but it also reduces risks of getting high cholesterol and diabetes.
Regular walking can also strengthen your bones and prevent the development of osteoporosis (that is a disease that weakens the bones). Even if you already have osteoporosis walking can still improve your state because staying still is dangerous to your health. As we have mentioned, walking is safe for everyone with joint and any other feet problems. So, if you can’t do any other exercises, going for a walk is the best way to stay healthy.
Walking can reduce depression, anxiety, and other mental diseases
Many specialists have proved that regular physical activity can influence your mental state and even reduce depression. In the depressive state, it is very hard to do something productive, but everyday stroll is an easy activity, which is doable and can really improve the situation. Also, it is recommended walking in some green locations with a lot of vegetation like parks, forests, alleys, and squares.
Improving the memory
When our body is in a good physical state, our brain works better too. The more active life you have the less probability of mental decline and dementia in the old age. So, walking can improve not only the shape of the body but also the health and state of our brain.
Helps to sleep better
If you have problems with sleep or even if you have chronic insomnia, you can use walking as treatment. Regular physical activity improves your sleep, that’s why many specialists recommend going for a short walk before bed to have a long, deep and healthy sleep. By the way, not all sports activities are good for sleep. For example, weightlifting and running will not help you to sleep better. So, even if you are a sportsman, who lifts weight or professional runner, we still recommend you walking every day for better sleep.
Boosts up vitamin D
Vitamin D is very important for our health and well-being. The deficit of this vitamin can lead to increased chances to have cardiovascular disease, also it can cause asthma and even lead to cancer.
The best way to have a normal rate of vitamin D is getting it while being on the sun. Walking is a great opportunity to get some vitamin D. Just try to go for a walk in the morning when the sun is bright and safe for the skin. But if you are walking in the middle of the day, use special sunscreen to protect your skin from harmful sun radiation. Many people can feel the lack of this vitamin during winter when the days are short and sun may disappear for days. That’s why it is very important to go for a walk in winter when the sun is out.
Hope that all benefits we mentioned in this article will convince you to walk every day to stay healthy and happy.