Walking is a very inexpensive way to stay healthy and help keep your feet in shape. This is an activity suitable for all ages that can happen any time, year round and practically everywhere. It is also a great way for people to start getting the recommended amount of exercise, especially if they are unused to physical activity, pregnant, or overweight.
Most of us are familiar with the benefits of exercise; it helps control weight, cholesterol, and blood sugar levels. More specifically, walking is an aerobic exercise that delivers oxygen rich blood to your muscles. It is a healthy activity that will improve your cardiovascular fitness and lower your blood pressure as well as your risk for heart disease, stroke, and diabetes. Walking on trails and natural ground also prevents older adults from falling because they will be more use to the unevenness of the ground, which helps to improve their balance. Additionally, walking is a low-impact exercise that will be easy on your joints.
Did you know that a brisk walk can burn up to 100 calories per mile? You should try briskly walking for 30 minutes a day. If you have been inactive and are just beginning, start off slow and walk at least 5 to 10 minutes around the block. Work your way up to the “30 minute brisk walk” goal. It is okay to take it easy until you feel comfortable walking faster for longer periods of time, as any exercise is better than none.
After you start habitually walking, you should notice that you feel better overall. This is because your body will release endorphins that help relieve stress, anxiety, and decrease depression. Walking also gives you a chance to clear your mind and keep it sharp— some even consider it a type of meditation. Walking daily helps boost your mood, helps you get a good night’s sleep, keeps your muscles strong, and helps you live happier longer.
Before you start, be sure to wear proper fitting walking shoes to help prevent bunions, blisters, or calluses. Your shoes should be comfortable and offer enough support for you feet. Also, don’t forget to wear socks. Now get out there and enjoy the fresh air! :)
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