Walking daily has its indisputable health benefits and it is very much advised that everyone dedicates some of their time to do it. Don’t hesitate to go outdoors for an evening stroll, or if it is too cold pop to the gym for a quick walk on the tread mill as long as you get it into your daily schedule. The government recommendation is 30 minutes daily for at least 5 days a week. It is one of the easiest exercises there is!
Why put walking in your daily schedule
It is worth considering putting this refreshing and easy activity into your daily schedule as it prevents obesity, diabetes and reduces the risk of cancer. It will also help to release any stress and anxiety as you will be able to release the tension that is built up in your body and it will help you unwind. It also improved the capacity to think, slows the development of Alzheimer’s disease, boosts energy levels, and reduces fatigue. I found it very useful during my University days when I had stress of countless deadlines and exams, to go for a long walk every day. I felt like it cleared my head and even strengthened me for that dreaded all-nighter. It even works now when I am going through a stressful work period.
Dr Brown, a lecturer at Aston University called it the ‘Magic Pill’ at the British Science Festival which was held on September this year “You can get all of these health benefits, you can get a reduction in all of these diseases that are associated with ageing, by just keeping active, by walking for half an hour a day” Said Dr Brown relating to the reduction of diabetes, obesity and lowering the risks of cancer, as well as reducing the possibility of hip fractures in more fragile bodies by some 40%, in addition to improving ones mobility and agility. He also suggested that this was more effective in the long term than any form and hours of work outs in the gym.
How to get motivated
Everyone has different methods of motivation and it is down to you to find out what works best for you. Here are some suggestions that may boost your enthusiasm:
Get a walking buddy. If you are in need of motivation, get a friend to walk with you in order to give you that extra boost of motivation. Making a commitment with someone will make it less likely for you to cancel. If you are going on your own it is easier to make excuses.
Split the walk into two 15 minutes if you find yourself short of time throughout your day.
Set yourself targets– using pedometers to find out your average walking distance or steps taken weekly, then go that extra step or mile! Do not forget to reward yourself after achieving your goals.
Rewarding walks are not only found in the countryside or in national parks, inner cities and town walks are also as rewarding. If art is your muse keep an eye out for street art within the east London area. Additionally London’s 6 mile canal walk can be a pleasant and worthy walk, stopping of at Broadway Market in E8 4PH for some cloths shopping of canal boats or to grab a bite and a coffee. Continuing on the canal leads you to Vyner street in E2 9DG for those with an arty eye or those who like second hand books and vintage clothing pieces. If feeding the ducks is more your thing, Victoria Park E9 7ED is the place for you to walk to.
Other ways to fit walking into your exercise regimen
- Take the stairs instead of the lift! It’s a no brainer.
- Go for a walk around the area in your 15 minute work break rather than lounging around. Taking the chance to turn away from the day to day stress will in itself refresh your mind and de-stress you from all that is going on at the desk.
- Walk to work rather than taking public transport when living within walking distance. If you live too far to walk then maybe you can get off one stop early and enjoy the freshness of the outdoors before being stuck in the office for 8 hours.
We would definitely suggest this ‘magic pill’ to all in order to maintain a healthy lifestyle! In order to avoid a deterioration of your health, both mentally as well as physically, follow the advice. Our bodies were made for moving, not for sitting down at a desk all day which puts pressure on our spinal discs.
And if it is one message that you get from reading this article, it is to keep active.
You can read more about the health benefits of walking here.