You may want to skip taking the bus or driving your car to work or school today – you will be missing out on the health benefits of walking. As a society in the modern age, we have forget how important the simple act of walking is. With the invention of the automobile and alternative means of transportation, we have been neglecting our legs. If you need some motivation to get off the couch and onto the street or through the park by foot here are ten benefits of walking:
1. Ward Off Heart Disease
Heart disease is a serious problem that affects many of us, and is one of the top leading causes of death. However, it doesn’t need to be like this. One of the best things you can do to prevent heart disease is simply going on a walk.
2. Reduce High Blood Pressure
Stress and poor lifestyle habits can lead to your heart pumping away and having high blood pressure. If you’ve found yourself in this situation, or have a family history of high blood pressure, you must make it a point to get up and walk each day.
3. Prevent Cancer and Other Serious Diseases
While we don’t have a cure for cancer, we have a general guideline as to what causes it. And one of those causes is a sedentary life. Get up and get your move on – walking has been shown to prevent cancer.
4. Relieve Stress
Work, studies, children, deadlines – these can really take a toll on our bodies and wear down on our minds. Fight high levels of cortisol with a daily brisk walk. Walking is one of the best ways to clear your mind and fight off daily stress.
5. Improve Mood
This goes hand in hand with fighting stress – walking is proven to increase one’s mood. If you’re feeling down in the dumps and have had a bad day, or are so angry you want to punch the walls, instead of opting for harmful activities, do something that will improve your negative feelings and ultimately boost your mood (i.e. walking).
6. Recreational Activity
Ever felt so bored to the point where you’d do anything? Instead of watching TV all day or staring at the wall, do something productive for your health and engage in something rewarding. Walking is a form of recreational activity and is a great way to get out and see the world.
7. Strengthen Muscles and Bones
You may not even realize it, but walking strengthens your bones and joints with each and every step you take. Because of its low impact nature, you will likely not feel the benefits, but it does in fact strengthen your body.
8. Weight Management
Walking is a great way of burning calories, and of those calories lost a higher percentage of fat is lost than running! Walking is a great form of burning fat and managing your weight. Finish a meal? Go for a walk and boost your digestion and avoid the storage of fat.
9. Deeper Sleep
Walking is one of the best ways to get a deep sleep naturally. Forget about medication and over the counter pills – a day full of walking is sure to get you some shut eye.
10. Increased Energy
If you find yourself barely able to keep your eyes open during the day, chances are walking will help you stay more alert and awake. Energy is something we all need and by simply walking up stairs, to work or school, and taking 15 minutes of our day to walk, we can improve our energy.
Walking is not just a pointless way of transportation. Despite having cars that can race down the street and buses that take us places affordably, sometimes the best transportation is our own legs – especially when it comes to the numerous health benefits walking offers.