Many of us brush off walking as a form of exercise because it doesn't feel "hard enough". We often choose to drive instead of walk because it saves us a few minutes. In my opinion, walking is way under rated. Here are 5 reasons why you should go for a walk right now:
Easily burn fat - When we move our bodies while keeping our heart rate below 160 bpm, we burn fat rather than sugar or carbohydrates. This helps to improve insulin sensitivity (insulin resistance can lead to Type II diabetes, as well as other preventable diseases). It also improves our cardiovascular and musculoskeletal systems with very minimal risk of injury or soreness. Walking is an easy way to accomplish this.
Improve your mood -Getting outside has been shown to improve your mood. Walking outside can provide a quick mental break from whatever you are working on, giving your body the chance to explore a different environment. Many people find that after walking outside they feel calmer and happier.
Increase your vitamin D - Walking outside will result in natural vitamin D production. According to one study, up to 50% of people do not meet their vitamin D requirements. Vitamin D is produced in the skin with sun exposure, and is required to absorb calcium and phosphorus, which are both crucial to bone health. Vitamin D acts more as a hormone, and deficiency has been linked to various cancers, depression, and weight gain. Walking outside with some sunlight hitting your skin can help increase your vitamin D levels naturally.
Relieve low back pain - Walking can help prevent and reduce low back pain. Low back pain often comes from being sedentary. The joints, muscles, and ligaments may shorten or tighten, reducing the amount of movement and mobility in the area. This can then lead to nerve irritation, as well as low back and hip pain. Walking can ensure that your joints are moving and your muscles are working. When your body works the way it was designed to, many aches and pains can be avoided or relieved.
Sharpen your mind - Your brain health can improve when you walk. The extra blood flow and movement that occurs while walking can improve your memory and coordination. It can also boost some of the "feel good" hormones your brain produces, and has even been shown to improve creativity.
Walking is free, requires no specific equipment, and you can do it anywhere for as long as you like! So, what are you waiting for? Get your steps in and go for a walk!