7 Ways Walking Daily Improves Your Health
We’ve all heard that we should aim to get around 10,000 steps a day. For many of us, a fitness watch or app is a daily reminder to get moving. Walking does so much more than just burn calories! Our bodies were made for movement, and walking is one of the most accessible ways that we can stay active. When you go for a walk, you are supporting your joints, bones, brain, and body. Let’s explore all the ways that walking everyday can improve your life. Go for a walk – because it feels good to move!
What are some of the benefits of walking?
- Walking Regularly Promotes Healthy Body Weight
Walking is an excellent exercise. It’s easy to do and you can do it with a friend. A walk will look different for everyone, and that’s okay. When you start to add walking into your routine, start with a path and a length of time that is doable for you. Whether you are taking long hike or 15-minute walks around your neighborhood, you are doing good for your body.
Getting your steps in burns calories. You can increase the calorie burn by walking hills or picking up the pace. Try to mix up your routes to keep it exciting. Aim to keep a walking schedule that will fit into your life and set goals that you can accomplish!
By adding a daily walk to your routine, you will increase metabolism and burn extra calories. Walking also utilizes the muscles of the lower body and the abdominals.
- A Daily Walk Supports Circulation and Heart Health
We’re built to walk. Likewise, our bodies function best when we walk on a regular basis. A sedentary lifestyle leads to an increased risk of cardiovascular disease. But studies show that just 21 minutes of walking each day can reduce that risk by 30%. Walking may not be competitive or glamorous, but it can drastically improve the quality of your life – and potentially save it! Large scale studies which have followed participants for over a decade have shown that walking lengthens lifespan and supports heart health.
- Healthier Joints and Less Pain
It may seem as though the impact and weight of walking would put pressure and strain on the joints. As it turns out, regular walking improves range of motion and supports mobility. Walking increases blood flow and circulation, pumping oxygenated blood to stiff areas. By lubricating the joints, walking helps to relieve pain. Plus, using muscles strengthens them. Walking strengthens the quads, glutes, and hamstrings and all the muscle surrounding the joints.
- A Walk a Day Keeps the Blues Away
Researchers have found a link between a gentle daily walk and a mood boost. The boost can be even more impactful if you walk in nature. You don’t have to walk far! The study revealed that just 10 minutes of walking outdoors can improve your overall mood. Extra bonus points if you walk with a friend, the benefits of socializing, walking, and being in nature all work together to significantly improve your mood.
- Walking is a Natural Pump for Lymphatic Drainage
The lymphatic system doesn’t get discussed often, but it is a key piece of healthy body function. Lymph is responsible for moving fats and fluids through the tissues of the body. Without proper lymphatic drainage, the body can’t remove waste like bacteria and viruses from the body. Luckily, walking is a free preventative measure in the quest to rid the body of baddies.
The heart is the pump for the cardiovascular system. But the lymphatic system doesn’t have a pump. Instead, physical activity is the pump! Walking, by nature, is an accessible and easy way to stimulate the lymphatic system every day and prevent lymph retention and disease.
- Want a Better Night’s Sleep? Go for a walk!
Studies at Johns Hopkins have concluded that exercise improves quality of sleep. The results are in – you don’t have to work out too tough to get some high-quality ZZZs. In fact, the study suggests that 20-25 minutes of brisk walking can do the trick. So, not only is that walk helping you fight off disease and excess weight, but it can also help you hit the hay and call it a day!
- Increased Creativity
Many great minds have gotten their creative juices flowing by walking for inspiration. Walking is second nature to us. When we walk, we are moving, but our minds are free to wander to wherever they dream to go. Many authors, too, say the only cure for writer’s block is a good old-fashioned stroll! Scientists theorize that the stimulation is a result of the different parts of the brain which are activated during a walk. But, regardless of why, the fact remains that if you need some inspirado, get to steppin’ and your thoughts will follow!
A Healthy Skeleton, Less Pain, and Support for the Brain
On the quest to be your best self? Clearly, adding walking into your daily routine will benefit your body and mind in countless ways. To further support the effort, try adding turmeric into your diet. Turmeric contains a compound called curcumin. Research shows that regularly ingesting curcumin can reduce joint pain and inflammation. Adding turmeric to your daily regimen can reduce pain and stiffness in the joints and increase mobility. Large scale studies also suggest that turmeric supports bone mass and density, mood, and memory.