We are often told how walking is one of the best exercises we can get, and this is why each year it is celebrated with its own national day.
May has been named National Walking Month! And annually we celebrate the health benefits which come from regular walking!
Walking is something which most of us do every day. Whether that be just from your car to your office or a mile’s walk around the local park you’re still walking daily.
Very often it is seen as a low impact exercise (provided you’re not speed walking) and that’s why it’s a great starting point for encouraging people to incorporate exercise into their lives.
Additionally, walking is a type of cardiovascular exercise. This means that it is great for both your heart health and respiratory system. Walking is known to improve both your circulation, and lung capacity. This makes it easier for you to engage in more strenuous exercise in the future, providing you keep it up.
So why is walking such a good exercise? Below we will explore the:
Health benefits of regular walking
As stated above, regular walking can help to improve your respiratory system.
Research has shown that regular low impact exercise can improve the way that your body uses oxygen. As well as also improving your lung capacity. This means that walking, can be used a great starter exercise for those who are new to a healthier lifestyle.
Using walking as a starter exercise will mean that in just a few months, you will be able to participate in more strenuous exercises such as running or jogging.
Alternatively, walking to improve lung health can be beneficial to those who suffer from COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease). Studies have shown that for sufferers of COPD can improve their symptoms by partaking in regular light exercise.
Additionally to lung health, walking can also improve your heart and circulatory system.
Regular walking is related to improved heart health due to its positive impacts on conditions such as hypertension (high blood pressure) or hyperlipidemia (high cholesterol).
As well as this, walking will also temporarily raise your heart rate – this action will help to improve your resting heart rate as it adjusts.
By helping to improve heart health, walking can decrease the risks of contracting cardiovascular (heart) disease.
Cardiovascular disease is one of the biggest killers in the UK; a massive one in four British citizens die each year as a result of it.
It is important to note that cardiovascular disease can be prevented!
21% of deaths related to cardiovascular disease have a direct link to the deceased’s weight. That means this same 21% could have been avoided with a simple lifestyle change.
A simple lifestyle change can alter your chances of developing this life-threatening illness in the future.
And this leads us nicely on to yet another health benefit…
Walking can help to reduce body fat and aid in weight loss.
Walking is exercise, and exercise burns calories.
The best part however is that walking is an exercise which we all do, every day. And so it doesn’t have to feel like an exercise.
By completing your daily recommended steps you can burn between 400-500 extra calories per day. By partnering this with a healthy diet too you can improve your overall weight loss perspectives. Something which might just save your life.
We are frequently told that being overweight is bad for your health, but this passing statement is often overlooked.
However, ongoing research into the effects of being overweight or obese has flagged up some major life-threatening issues.
We must take these illnesses seriously.
People who are overweight, are much more likely to develop type two diabetes or cardiovascular disease as they approach their senior years. However, those who have a BMI of above 35 may even see these effects much earlier on in life.
Additionally to physical health, walking can improve your mental health too!
Engaging in regular exercise and staying healthy can be beneficial to your mental health.
Walking can help to improve both self-confidence and self-esteem.
Furthermore, walking as part of a group, for example, local rambler clubs, can also go towards helping to battle isolation, a key factor in mental health struggles.
How can Sunshine Gym help promote walking?
Sunshine Gym aims to promote a healthy and active lifestyle. Therefore we try to encourage taking part in as much outdoor physical activity as possible.
Walking is a great start and can be both fun and beneficial.
Due to the nature of this activity walking is perfect for large groups, making it a great social activity. Thus allowing you to get active and lose weight, without even realising it!
Not only can walking provide a fun activity for you and a group of friends but it is also a fun, free and flexible activity which fits into your lifestyle no matter how hectic.
The low resistance piece of equipment allows you to set your own pace, and the action though mimicking walking does, in fact, have a much smaller impact on your knee and ankle joints, therefore making it a great place for those trying to make a drastic lifestyle change.