As a former athlete and strength and conditioning coach, walking as a form of exercise has not been on my radar. I’ve favored lifting stuff, sprinting, or some form of exercise that’s a little bit more intense and structured.
But in the past few months, I have realized though how much I enjoy just taking a leisurely stroll with members of “my bubble” and just walking until we get bored. These leisurely outdoor walks have been a way for me to “de-stress” from time spent staring on screens and taking a break from the news cycle that oh, so dominates our days lately.
When I come to think of it, walking can be the perfect exercise for a lot of people. There’s no fuss about walking. Just put on your shoes, and just go. You don’t even need to think about how you’re walking unless you really want to. You can do it in the mall, your village, in an open space, or wherever your feet take you.
What exactly are the health benefits of walking?
There is an increase in heart and lung fitness
A reduced risk of heart disease and stroke
Improved management of conditions such as hypertension, high cholesterol, joint and muscular pain or stiffness, and hyperglycemia (high blood sugar)
Stronger bones and improved balance
Reduced body fat
These benefits can be attained once you are consistent and you also watch what you eat. Walking is also a good exercise option for people who want to exercise but are still wary of going to the gym or exercising indoors. Walking is safe for most people, but as always, when struggling with any medical condition consult your doctor for the exercise that is right for you.