I love walking, especially with our dog Bear. It clears my head, gets my heart pumping(mainly when I'm chasing her after she's seen another pooch) gets plenty of
fresh air in my lungs and just as importantly it's FREE!
"The beauty of walking is that you can do it anywhere, on you own, with friends, in the city or country side, fast, slow or quick quick slow - you choose!"
We should be aiming to do 150 minutes of physical activity per week to help us maintain a healthy body and promote weight loss where required.
What are the benefits?
Regular walking assists in the control of weight, helps to increase bone density, strengthens and tones the core body muscles, improves joint mobility and can help to protect against potential bone problems such as osteoporosis. In additon to this your all round fitness levels are improved, and this will continue to be the case for as long as you are regulary active - ideally 30 minutes everyday.
Brisk walking reduces blood pressure and then just as impotantly helps keeps it down; it encourages the production of HDL cholesterol in the blood (HDL or high-density lipoprotein is the “good”, protective cholesterol) while, at the same time, lowering the level of “bad” LDL cholesterol (LDL is the fat in the blood linked with heart disease).
Regular walking will help to reduce mortality and the chance of developing cardiovascular disease. Being active means you will be less prone to injury because joints have a better range of movement and muscles are more flexible and promote joint stability.
Regular walking also helps those who suffer with sleeping issues, with stress and anxiety problems.
Remember you should walk at a pace where you are slightly out of breath but still be able to hold a conversation comfortably - this level will improve your fitness.
Plot your progress using technology
Virtually all smartphones have a health or fitness app, if not you can download them for free. These apps are a great way of tracking how far you have walked, speed, calories burnt etc. Simply pop your phone in your pocket and off you go! If you have a fitness watch such as a Fitbit of Apple watch you will probaly be able to track your heart rate too! Although sometimes if you are power walking if can be very scary seeing your heart rate raise quickly!
So basically, get those trainers on and get walking, every step is a step in the right direction for a fitter and healthier you!
Have a look at this website for health walks in your area
If you have any medical conditon that you feel maybe affected by starting a wlaking programme, you should check with your GP before starting any new exercise regime.