Ok, I admit it. I put a lot of emphasis on exercise in these articles. But, at the end of the day, it’s for your own good. Exercise is more important for us than my English degree could ever mold into words. The awful truth is that I am not a huge exercise buff, myself. Why lace up my shoes and go for a jog in the cold when I could lounge around with a hot chocolate and a good movie, instead? Believe me. I understand. That’s why this article is about the power of a good walk. If you are able to walk, even if it is just around your living room – you’ll never believe just how good for you it can be.
- Low-Impact Exercise – A lot of the stereotypical exercises that we do can be awful on our joints and as we age this becomes an even bigger concern. Age starts to naturally wear away at the cushioning our joints once enjoyed so it is very important (from the beginning, ideally) to opt for low-impact exercises like walking.
- Strengthens Your Brain – it’s true. In a recent study, seniors who walked 6 or more miles a week had less overall brain-shrinkage and lower occurrences of dementia.
- Tones Your Muscles – it can be a gradual change, but overtime, walking will begin to tone your leg, back, and abdominal muscles which will strengthen them and keep you more steady.
- Lowers Risk of Disease – the list of illnesses that are reduced or even prevented from walking is so long it could be its own article. Instead, I will just list a few: heart disease, diabetes, cancer, stroke, high blood pressure, osteoporosis, depression, anxiety, kidney disease, hypertension, increased circulation, obesity, arthritis, etc.
- Improves Your Mood – I know that it may be hard to motivate, that one more episode of the Great British Baking Show won’t hurt or you’re finally making time for that thing you’ve been meaning to get to. I know what you’re up to – you are procrastinating and it’s a chronic illness. But, believe it or not a nice walk will make you feel better. Go ahead. Try it. You might be surprised just how refreshed you feel.
- Boosts Your Immune System – yeah, that’s right. You thought the medical benefits were covered. You were wrong. There’s more. Walking once a day can help fend off normal flus and colds by boosting your immune system.
- It Gives You Time to Think – this is one of those benefits that most people don’t consider immediately. However, people who walk everyday often comment on how useful and reflective the time they spend walking is. Without a screen or the needs of others in front of your face, you can focus on things that need your attention, but you’ve neglected to give it.
- You Were Made for Movement – our caveman cousins didn’t evolve to sit in front of a computer screen all day. We were made to hunt and track and move across broad landscapes. Our behavior and culture may have changed but our evolution is still in our cells and it’s older than our technology. Move the way you were made to and your cells will thank you.
Walking may not seem like a lot of exercise. Compared to Olympians and marathon runners, what could a simple daily walk really do for us? The answer is “A LOT” and this list is just some of them. Once you commit to the walking life you’ll find a whole lot more, including a couple of personalized ones you never saw coming.