Without a doubt, walking is the easiest and most underrated forms of exercise. Even if you hate exercising, walking is better than no exercise at all! There are plenty of studies that show the amazing benefits of walking to your mental, physical and emotional health.
Still need some convincing to get moving and start walking today?
Here’s a list of 10 benefits of walking daily that will surely get you motivated to lace up your shoes, put in your ear buds and hit the pavement!
1. Time Flexibility
No matter where you are, you have the ability to walk. You can fit in a quick 20-minute walk during your lunch break, before or after work, or even take walking meetings while at work. The sky is the limit when it comes to walking! When and how you walk is up to you!
2. It’s Free
There’s no membership fee, signup sheet, or hours of operation when it comes to walking. Walking is completely free and you can literally walk anywhere! Around your house. Around the block. Walking trails. Through your neighborhood. The options for walking are endless, and you don’t have to commute anywhere to do it!
3. Weight Loss
When walking is paired with a healthy and well-balanced diet, it can aid in weight loss. You don’t need to spend hours in a gym or sweat profusely to lose weight. The more you walk, you’ll lose inches and even body fat – reducing your risk of obesity and type 2 diabetes.
4. Opportunity to Socialize
You can walk alone or you can form a walking group with your closest friends and family members. It’s the perfect way to burn calories and make time for socializing and catching up with friends. You can even make it a fun family activity for either before or after dinner.
5. Reduces Risk of Obesity
According to the American Journal of Preventative Medicine, for every 0.62 miles walked daily, the risk of obesity is reduced by as much as 5%. The key is to just move your body, and what best way to do that than going for a walk to get your blood flowing and muscles moving.
6. Reduces Heart Issues
Walking a few miles in a week can greatly reduce your risk of heart and cardiovascular issues. Of course, the longer the walk and the faster the pace can add to that protection from heart issues.
7. Boosts Creativity
A study published in the Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition found people who went for a walk were able to boost their creativity and allow for outside the box thinking. It is a great way to get up from your desk and away from your computer to gain a fresh perspective. So, when you get stuck or are stuck in your thoughts, get some fresh air to get those ideas flowing.
8. Cuts Down on Sugar Cravings
Many studies show that walking when in a stressful or emotional situation can cut down the urges to eat sugary foods. The better you feel, the less likely you are to eat those sugary and chocolatey snacks.
9. Improve Mental Health
It is no secret that exercise and physical activity is known to improve mental health. Psychologists found that just going or a 10-minute walk can be beneficial for reducing depression and anxiety. Sunlight is a natural way to boost your serotonin levels which can stave off depression or anxiety by turning your mood around.
10. Lowers Blood Pressure
Many people don’t view walking as exercise. It is established that 10,000 steps a day is what most should strive for. With more than 100 million people living in the United States are living with diabetes or prediabetes, aiming for even a fraction of that can lower blood pressure. Walking for 20 to 30 minutes before or after a meal has a profound impact on lowering blood glucose levels.
The Bottom Line
Get walking today. Walking is one of the best ways to get exercise in with very minimal effort. Walking is beneficial to not only physical health, but also mental and emotional. Are you motivated yet? Stand up and get started today! Every step counts. A little walking is better than no walking. Break your sessions up throughout the day if you have to. Get in the steps when you can to reap the benefits.