Walk, Stroll, or Roll in the Park Day!

Photo by SHVETS production on Pexels.com A white man in a wheelchair with outstretched arms enjoying a stroll while being pushed by a white woman outdoors.

A walk might seem like child’s play compared to running a marathon or competing in crossfit, but a walk can be a very healthy alternative if you lack the time or interest in exercising intensely. In fact, for most people, the maximum benefit from movement can be achieved in about 30 minutes 4 times a week.

Most humans were built for walking, and even people with challenged mobility can enjoy a smooth path with adaptative equipment.

If you are not able to get outdoors, there are many virtual walks available to enjoy and sitting by a window with air and sunshine can help replicate some of the mood boosting benefits of getting outdoors for a walk, stroll, or roll. Your overall health, brain, waistline, and mental health are all enhanced by walking of any kind!

Walk or roll your way to improved health:

  1. Control blood glucose levels. A 15-minute walk after a meal has been shown to lower blood sugar in those with glucose control issues. The risk of type-2 diabetes is lowered by 60% in those that walk daily regardless of size or weight.

  2. Enhance brain health. Walking has been shown to boost grades, memory, and creativity. Who knew you could get smarter, slimmer, and healthier from the simple act of taking a walk?

  3. Walking is a great opportunity to think and make decisions. A brisk walk takes you out of your home or office. A change in scenery can clear your mind and provide the mental space necessary to make a wise decision.

  4. Strengthen your heart. Even a modest pace is enough to keep your heart in good shape. Low Impact movement has been shown to lower levels of bad cholesterol while raising good cholesterol. Walking is also good for your blood pressure. Walking reduces your risk of heart attacks and stroke. Thirty minutes a day is all it takes.
  • Control weight. A walk won’t undo the ravages of a triple bacon cheeseburger, but it does burn a few calories. More importantly, walking helps to keep your metabolism in shape. Excess calories are dealt with more effectively.

  • Walking is cheap and easy. Aside from a pair of shoes, and even shoes are optional, you don’t need anything to go for a walk. There’s no complex skill to learn or expensive equipment to purchase. Walking or similar adapted movement is an option for nearly anyone, regardless of age or current fitness level. It’s easy on your joints and carries a minimal risk of injury.

  • Lift your mood. If you’re feeling a little blue, a short walk can give a needed boost to your morale. Those that walk regularly report having a better mood than those that don’t.

  • Reduce stress. Take a stroll the next time you’re feeling stressed. Walking attacks stress in two ways. It can take your mind off your challenges. It also metabolizes the biochemical and neurotransmitters that create the physiological feelings and symptoms of stress.

  • Increase your lifespan. The number of years you can expect to gain from 2.5 hours of walking each week is at least 3-4. Not bad for results from an activity that most people find enjoyable.

Spring is here! Imagine how much you could strengthen your health with a resolution to walk for 30 minutes at least four times each week. Let go of your belief that you need to sweat and strain at the gym to be healthy. Exercise can be more comfortable than that and should be enjoyed in order to become a daily habit!

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