Winter is nearly finished and spring is around the corner. Already we are beginning to experience some beautiful sunny days, which means we can start to think of outdoor fun and activity. We often begin to plan our social calendar with holidays, sport and social gatherings such as weddings. This is the time of year when we want to feel and look our very best so that we can enjoy life to the max. That’s why looking after your nutrition and participating in regular exercise will help you achieve your “best self”.
The good news is that you only have to exercise for at least 30 minutes a day to get results. If you have not done much exercise recently and are feeling a little unconditioned, beginning with walking is often a nice way to start and the benefits are endless. The beauty of walking as an exercise is that you don’t need any equipment, nor do you need a trainer to teach you technique to get it right. It’s something we do every day of our lives and it comes naturally — and the best news is it’s free. All you need is a good pair of shoes to support your feet and to walk out the door, and you’re on your way.
Six Health Reasons to start walking at any age:
- Walking is good for the heart, reduces blood pressure and improves blood circulation and all-round cardiovascular function.
- Increases energy and overall fitness.
- Promotes good mental health and is a fantastic way to release stress, especially if you’ve had a tough day at work.
- Great for your bones — just by walking 30 minutes a day you can strengthen your bone density and slow down bone loss in the legs. Because it is a low-impact exercise it protects the joints a lot better than running does.
- Helps to maintain mobility around the joints, especially if your job keeps you restricted to an office and computer.
- Can help prevent Type 2 diabetes, especially if there is a history in the family.
Studies have shown that aiming to do 10, 000 steps a day is more effective than 30 minutes of continuous walking. It appears that when people aim to achieve 10,000 steps throughout their day, their activity and incidental exercise is increased. People have been shown to be more conscious of doing things like taking the stairs rather than using lifts, or choosing to walk to the corner store rather than driving. So now is the time to start making some changes. Go out today and buy yourself a pedometer. Start your 10,000 steps a day and ease your way into health and fitness, ready to embrace the new season of fun and activity. After all, spring is meant to be enjoyed in the great outdoors.