For so many of us, finding a workout routine we like and can stick with is difficult. The news media and our doctors tell us the importance of it all the time. We hear over and over again about the many benefits. Our fit friends continually encourage us to come along with them to their next boot camp or tough mudder run. Yet we still struggle to find something that works within our schedules and that we can actually look forward to.
Well here’s the really good news. Incorporating walking into your life is an amazing way to get fit and reap the health benefits of exercise. Walking? No way you say! Yes, it’s true. Research shows that walking is all you need to live a long, healthy life. By putting one foot in front of the other on a consistent basis, your body and your mood will benefit.
Starting a walking routine can be as easy as lacing up your sneakers and getting up off the couch. Find times in your day you can add a few steps. Don’t overwhelm yourself with a lofty goal right off the bat. First, aim to be consistent. Depending on your daily schedule, plan a 10-minute walk before or after work. Aim for a goal of 3-4 walks that first week. If you crave company, enlist a family member or a neighbor to commit with you. Or better yet, take your dog with you. He will quickly become your daily alarm clock reminder for a stroll. You can increase your life expectancy right out of the gate. Studies show that incorporating a little over 1 hour of walking a week to your routine, or less than 10 minutes per day, can add nearly 2 years to your life.
The great news is you can always increase the amount you walk in little ways throughout your day. March in place during a few commercial breaks when watching TV. Park in the back row of the parking lot at the mall. Take a lap around the perimeter of the grocery store before you start shopping. The possibilities are endless. Make it fun. Challenge your workout friends to come up with fun ways to add more steps.
Let’s go for a Walk
Only 5 minutes of walking can give you an instant mood boost. You may even find yourself craving the activity. If you wish, you can challenge yourself with power walking or interval training. But for now, just give it a try. Spring weather is on the horizon. The days are brighter and longer and the weather warmer. It couldn’t be a better time to get started. Walking is easy and free and so beneficial. Treat your body and mind to a walk today and it just might turn into the exercise routine that fits your lifestyle. Hey, want to go for a walk right now? Let’s go!