Benefits of Walking – Are you one of those who spend thousands on a premium gym membership only to later quit due to your busy schedule? Have you ever looked into the mirror and promised yourself to start working out next day only to forget it amidst your office meeting?
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You are not alone. People rarely find time for family these days let alone going through a grueling workout routine in the gym.
However, you do not need those expensive gym memberships unless you want abs like Brad Pitt or Hugh Jackman. If your only goal is to stay healthy and fit, all you have to do is walk.
Walking in modern life has become a lost art, but it is the single easiest ways to get fit. As the father of medicine and the greatest physician of all time, Hippocrates said, “Walking is man’s best medicine.”
However, if you do not believe the ancient advice of Hippocrates, read on to discover amazing proven benefits of walking which can bring miraculous improvements to your overall health and fitness.
Say Goodbye to Obesity
Obesity has emerged as the real epidemic of our times. Right from teenage kids to adults, obesity has spread like a wildfire. Today, people are obsessed with losing weight and fat.
They will try all sorts of things to lose weight– crazy diets, intermittent fasting, heavy workouts in gyms (which they quit after sometime), wearing rings( yes people do that!!) and what not.
However, the simple solution lies in a routine of walking. Brisk walking for 30-40 minutes a day regularly (the word is REGULARLY and not occasionally!) can bring down the weight scales dramatically.
Since walking is in itself a moderate cardiovascular exercise, it helps in fat loss as well. This is due to the ideal rate during walking which remains in the fat-melting zone most of the time.
Walking Daily Keeps Your Heart Healthy
The modern age can be aptly called as an age of diseases and medicines. Yes, the life expectancy and quality of life have gone up as compared to the past but we cannot be so sure of life quality. Today obesity, high blood pressure, heart diseases have become prevalent on a massive scale.
Moreover, walking regularly can help not only to prevent these dangerous diseases but also can reduce their effects. Several studies have proven positive effects of walking on curing and preventing these diseases.
For instance, Medicine & Science in Sports and Exercise journal published a study which discovered that walking 9700 steps a day for 6 months reduced the systolic blood pressure and body mass of sedentary women.
Similarly, researchers at Harvard studied on 11,000 men and concluded that brisk walking for an hour for five days a week could cut the stroke risk by 50%.
Do Not Fear The Dreaded Diabetes
Walking also helps to fight another most common and dreaded disease of today- Type-2 Diabetes. Diabetes is caused due to the inability of the body to regulate blood sugar levels. People who are suffering from diabetes can walk after 15 minutes of taking their meals. This ensures that the glycemic levels in the body are under control.
Walking after meals also helps in regulating triglyceride levels and lowering blood pressure. For healthy people without diabetes as well, walking after meals or otherwise can help them to maintain a healthy weight and prevent the onset of disease.
Low Impact Large Benefit
If you are a beginner to exercise, health professionals never recommend starting from jogging, heavy workouts, running, etc. This is because these exercises put significant strain on joints and bone. People, especially those who are new to exercise, must always begin with walking as it is a low impact exercise.
Walking does not cause any sudden impact or load on joints and gradually improves the fitness level of an individual. It is due to this reason that even arthritis patients, who find regular exercise painful, can incorporate walking in their exercise routines easily.
No More Weak Bones
As we age, our bones also undergo significant wear and tear. This is especially common in females who are more prone to bone related diseases than males.
Bone disease osteoporosis is also more prevalent among women, however, if one follows a regular and simple walking routine, he or she can prevent these problems to a large extent. Walking strengthens the bones, joints and muscles especially those surrounding buttocks and legs.
Many medical researches also prove the benefits of walking on bone health and joint related diseases. For example, a study on over 30000 men and women aged between 20 to 93 found that walking reduced the risk of hip fracture.
Another research shows that there walking for 30 minutes a day few times a weak increase bone density in postmenopausal women. It also reduced the rate of bone loss from legs associated with increasing age.
Fights Depression and Enhances Mood
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It can also help in fighting the most dangerous yet underrated disease of modern life- Depression. Physical exercise of any kind releases chemicals such as dopamine and other feel-good hormones (endorphins) in our brains.
If you have ever done a physical workout before, you must be familiar with that feeling of euphoria after the workout. That is the magic of endorphins and dopamine. Also, walking at a brisk pace for 30-40 minutes can achieve the same effect on our mood just like any other workout.
Long Walks Lead to Amazing Thoughts
Famous leaders, writers and visionaries are known for going on long walks and strolls. It has been a favorite pastime of many individuals known for their creativity and imagination. Many people swear by the power of walking in exploring great ideas, receiving inspiration, and boosting the creativity.
“All truly great thoughts are conceived while walking,” said the famous philosopher Friedrich Nietzsche. Moreover, it cannot be further from the truth. You can receive the dose of fresh air and much needed break by taking a walk outside, preferably in a garden or natural surroundings.
Even if you feel physically fit and healthy, you will surely enjoy the mental peace and clarity during and after a walk in nature. CEOs of many top tech companies today are known for conducting their meetings on a walk. Moreover, they have felt dramatic improvements in the quality of such outdoor meetings.
So even if you do not feel the need of experiencing physical benefits of walking, you can appreciate the importance of enhanced creativity, inspiration, and clarity obtained from a long walk.
So, it does not matter whether you start your day with a morning walk or end the day with n an evening walk after the meal. It is impossible to ignore so many benefits of walking for a better, fitter, and healthier version of yourself.
What are you waiting for? Grab those pair of shoes and step outside your home to start walking and keep these benefits of walking in mind!!
Also Read: How to Select The Right Running Shoes.