Your body is built for walking. It’s a light impact aerobic exercise just about anyone can do. If you are able bodied enough, walking is a great way to stay healthy. There are many benefits from walking. Regular walks can help reduce your risk for cardiovascular disease, build strength and more.
Walking Improves Circulation
One walk a day can keep heart disease at bay. Walking is an aerobic exercise that raises your heart level, and pumps blood throughout your body. This can lower your risk for hypertension and keep your heart muscle in shape. A study done by researchers at the University of Colorado on post-menopausal women showed a correlation between walking and lower blood pressure. Women who walked up to 2 miles per day for 6 months were able to lower their blood pressure and reduce their risk of heart attack by an average of 11 points more than those who didn’t.
Walking Builds Muscle Strength
By walking you are working your core, legs and upper body (when you swing your arms). Walking is one of the most underrated ways to strengthen your muscles.
Walking Build Strong Bones
Losing bone density is part of normal age related decline. Walking may not be the only thing you need to build strong bones, but it certainly can help. People over the age of 60 who walk on a regular basis are better able to maintain bone density according to a study conducted by Dr. V. Wright, a surgeon at the University of Pittsburgh.
Walking Can Improve Mood
Walking, or any exercise for that matter, releases endorphins. Endorphins are feel good chemicals synthesized by the body that play a large role in regulating mood. They are known by many as the body’s natural pain killers. Taking long walks can also help you deal with stress, which can have a big impact on your mood.
Walking Promotes Weight Loss
Everyone knows that burning calories along with eating right leads to weight loss. Walking burns calories. If you walk at a decent pace for 30-45 minutes you will definitely burn some calories. Controlling your weight is an important part of staying healthy.
Walking Promotes Healthy Sleep
Those who have insomnia understand how hard it is to get to sleep. What many people don’t know is that walking is a natural sleep aid. A study conducted at the Fred Hutchinson Cancer Research Center indicated that women between the ages of 50 to 75 that walked for an hour everyday were able to reduce their risk for insomnia in comparison to women who didn’t.
Walking Improves Breathing
Breathe is the very essence of life. Walking is a great way to exercise your breathe without even thinking about it. Walking will increase your breathing rate, letting oxygen pass through your bloodstream. This can help you breathe economically.
Walking Keeps You Mentally Sharp
A study focused on women over the age of 65 at the University of California indicated that age related mental decline could be prevented through walking. Women who walked for at least 2 miles per day were able to perform better as a whole than those who didn’t on memory tests.
Walking Helps Prevent Alzheimer’s Disease
There are lots of advantages to staying physically active. Walking can play a major part in reducing the risk for Alzheimer’s disease and other memory related afflictions.
Walking Increases Endurance
Those who are 65 and older may need to focus on specific exercises that prevent injuries and disability. Walking is a great way to improve your endurance and overall fitness. Take things slow and steady. If you aren’t able to walk for 30 minutes a day that’s perfectly okay. Just do what you can until you gradually build up endurance.