We walk every day. From the moment we get out of bed to the moment we go to sleep, we’re often on our feet and walking. Or are we? Nowadays, we’re walking less than ever before. Partially because cities are simply not optimized for walking and most of us have to take some sort of transportation. But this is what got us lazy, and once you’re used to using transportation (public or personal), you use it for things that you don’t actually need it for as well. But there are plenty of benefits that come with walking, so let’s take a look at a few that will get you back on your feet.
Get the blood flowing
For a lot of people with poor circulation, the simplest reason is not spending enough time moving. If you aren’t using a body part enough, your body thinks that the part isn’t as important and doesn’t focus blood in that area. This is why after sitting for a while your legs will get numb – your body is just allocating resources. But bad circulation isn’t just a thing of discomfort – it can have real health consequences, especially if it’s persistent. The easiest way to fix this is to set a reminder that tells you to get up and walk every half an hour for about five minutes. And if something so easy can fix a problem – there’s no reason not to do it.
More and more research is showing that small increments of moderate activity spread out during the day is much healthier than one intense session once a day. And it makes sense – when you look a few centuries in the past, most people were working physical jobs and being active all throughout the day. Regular activity helps regulate blood pressure and gives you a healthier heart. This is boosted in the winter when your body circulates more blood to keep you warm. Just put on some comfy, warm boots, like NRL Ugg Boots and take a walk around the block a few times during the day. Not to mention that regular walking is a great gateway to other forms of exercise: if you’re used to going for a walk in the morning, you’ll be much more inclined to go to a morning yoga class.
Clear your mind
It’s common knowledge that the worst thing you can do when you’re thinking and making big decisions is to sit still in one place. Going for a walk helps you clear your mind and consider more perspectives. This isn’t purely placebo: We mentioned circulation, and your brain needs blood too – not to mention oxygen – which is usually found outside, not in your stuffy room where you’ve been contemplating life for the past few hours. Additionally, walking releases endorphin – the happy hormone – so it will help you feel better and happier. Walking is a great time to think about things that are on your mind, leave your phone behind, and just take the time to think. When you’re walking, you have nothing else to do, so it’s the perfect time for some light meditation.
And to end it with something obvious, but nevertheless important, walking will tone your leg muscles. If you have trouble with weaker legs, simple walking – as well as speed walking – will strengthen your leg muscles. Remember, when you’re walking, your legs are carrying the entire weight of your body, so you’re using your own mass as training weights whenever you walk. Walking is the easiest and most basic form of exercise you can do, and anyone who is capable should be using it to their advantage to live a healthier, happier life.