There are several health benefits of walking. One of the most basic ways to improve health is walking. It does not require a gym or a particular setting. It can be done during any time of the day and does not depend on any equipment or machine.
The motivation to walk can come from knowing the health benefits of walking. Sometimes, it takes a boost or two for us to make decisions that would actively contribute to a healthy lifestyle.
Walking is a commonly recommended form of exercise for everyone, especially when growing older. Knowing the health benefits of walking will help in adding it to your daily routine. Moreover, walking is a simple activity that can be done with friends and family without having to heavily think about one’s fitness levels.
7 health benefits of walking
1) Improves cardiovascular health
As you know, indulging in cardio is a good way to improve heart health. It promotes better blood flow and improves cholesterol levels along with blood pressure.
Walking is a basic yet effective form of cardiovascular exercise. It does not need to be fast-walking. A medium-speed-brisk-walk is equally effective.
2) Aids in burning calories
As mentioned above, walking is a good and simplest type of cardio. However, it is important to note that brisk walking is a form of Low Intensity Steady-State (LISS) cardio.
Therefore, walking for 30-minutes at a stretch will increase the metabolism which will require the body to burn excess calories for the excess energy required. As a result, walking aids in weight loss.
3) Improves immune system
If walking improves heart health, it also improves the immune system. It improves cholesterol levels, blood pressure, and burns calories for weight loss. Additionally, it protects the body from chronic diseases.
It so happens that physical exercises increase white blood cells in the blood, which in-turn fight harmful diseases.
4) Strengthens joints
Walking is a terrific way of strengthening the lower body muscles and joints.
Considering the lower body joints are always in motion during a walk, they are constantly lubricated to avoid any form of injury. One of the additional benefits of walking is protecting the joints from arthritis pain during old age.
5) Boosts energy and mood
When you make walking a part of your daily routine, you will see the changes in yourself. You feel good when your health is good.
Moreover, whenever walking becomes a part of the routine, it’s usually done outside the house. This gives an individual the chance to disconnect from the daily hustle of life and enjoy a breath of fresh air with a power walk!
6) Ensures daily movement
In today’s world, most of the day is spent sitting at one spot and working. Sedentary lifestyle and prolonged sitting can take a toll on physical health and can become painful for lower body joints.
While it’s not always possible to go to the gym during a work-day, walking will immensely contribute to the daily movement necessary. It’s imperative to move every day to allow the blood to flow properly.
7) Reduces stress
The way walking improves blood flow, it also improves oxygen intake. It enables a better flow of oxygen and blood to the brain, thus improving its health improves. As a result, the mind is able to relax and reduce stress while ensuring nutritional needs.
Things to remember for an efficient walk
While everyone knows how to walk, there are a few points to keep in mind if you want the walk to provide you with improved levels of fitness.
Engage your core muscles
Core muscles are important for stability and balance. Once you engage them during a walk, you will be able to move faster without losing balance. It is important to walk at a swift pace to burn calories.
Swing your arms
Swinging your arms from the elbows provides balance during rotational motions during walks. Arms help in providing momentum and ensuring better balance.
Heel to toe
Do not move with flat-foot steps. Make sure you use range of motion, the best way to have an efficient walk is to put your heel on the ground first, push through, move the pressure to your toes, and step out with your toes.
Walking is good for your health and overall longevity. You do not need to specifically take out time to walk during the day. It's something you can do anytime, anywhere. There are times when you can opt to walk from one point to another to reap the health benefits of walking.
Some people opt to walk from their office to the gym or from the gym to their home. This gives the entire day a proper wrap-up with a LISS cardio session before hitting the bed to recover the muscles and joints!