Walking is a great low-impact exercise. Walking is inexpensive and virtually everyone has the ability to engage in a walking exercise program. With more than one-third of American adults considered to be obese (as indicated by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention), taking care of your health is now more important than ever before. Obesity has a number of associated health risks including heart disease and type 2 diabetes. But why should you walk more? Taking a daily walk can help you to stay in shape and cut your risks for becoming obese or developing obesity-related health conditions. If you are overweight, obese or just have not exercised in awhile, walking is a great way to ease yourself into a regular exercise routine.
Walking when combined with a sensible diet can do wonders for your health. If you still are not convinced why you should walk more, here are five reasons that will make you want to get off your computer and head to the nearest park or treadmill.
Why You Should Walk More:
1. Did you know that engaging in a regular walking program can actually help to aid with the digestive process? Research indicates that a post-meal walk can not only aid in digestion but can also help to control blood sugar levels. Need another reason why you should walk more? Physically moving away from the kitchen or the dining room table eliminates the temptation to fill your plate with seconds or even thirds. Walking away from the table can do wonders for your waistline as well as your overall health.
2. You should walk more for the health of your bones. Walking is not going to add serious bulk to your muscles. Walking will not add bulk to your quads, glutes and hamstrings in the same way that deadlifts or squats will; but walking can still help to build up your strength.
Walking is a strengthening exercise that helps to improve the strength of your legs and core. Walking is also a great way to improve your cardiovascular fitness. While walking may not build-up large and bulky muscles, walking strengthens your bones more than going for a swim, biking or using an elliptical machine would.
Look for a walking buddy. You are less likely to skip out on a walk if you have someone counting on you to walk with them. You are going to be much more likely to stick with your evening walks and build strong, healthy bones is someone is counting on you to be there with them.
3. Walking is low-impact and won’t hurt your joints. In most situations, there is no reason to say that you are unable to participate in a walking program as part of a fitness routine. Even if you do engage in vigorous physical activity on a daily basis, you should walk more because sometimes your body needs a break from the physically demanding activities that you put in through.
Whether you are seasoned athlete, a bodybuilder, someone who has not exercised in years or someone who is recovering from an injury, walking is great for your health. If you are looking to lose weight, aim to walk for 20 minutes per day (this is with a healthy diet). If your diet is not-so-healthy, aim to walk one hour per day.
It’s recommended that we take 10,000 steps daily. To keep track of this, consider wearing a pedometer daily. This will help you to see how many steps you are taking and if you need to make any changes to your walking plan. If you need a little extra motivation to get off of the coach, a pedometer may also do the trick. If you don’t see your steps going up, chances are you are going to get up and do something about that! Prolonged time sitting down is not beneficial when it comes to anyone’s health.
4. Walking is not only great for your body but is great for your mind as well. You should walk more for your mental health! Spending all day seated at your computer screen, checking e-mails and meeting tough deadlines can be extremely stressful. Going for a walk can help to improve your mood. Take a walk on your lunch break to help reduce workplace stress. Stepping outside and walking can help to calm your nerves and help you to enjoy the rest of your day.. Walking is a quick and easy way to clear your head and boost your mood.
5. You should walk more to put an end to any laziness you may be experiencing. Nine times out of 10 there is absolutely no excuse not to take a walk. Even if you don’t feel like it, walking is quick and easy. Walking helps to keep your bones, muscles and joints in working order.
Copyright (c) 2014 LifeWorks Integrative health
Matthew Gianforte, DC serves Kansas City and Johnson County focusing on the underlying cause of disease through a whole systems approach with Functional Medicine, Chiropractic, and weight loss [http://www.lifeworkskcwl.com]. Stop managing symptoms and start treating the underlying cause of disease, thereby addressing our chronic disease epidemic. Connect on Facebook, and Google+.