The benefits of walking... why it’s good to walk1 May 2019
Can I tell you something? I used to think walking was a bit boring. But over the past couple of years I’ve really discovered the benefits of walking and now it’s one of my favourite types of exercise.
One of the great things about it is that it’s FREE! Yes, unlike the gym you don’t have to pay membership fees to go for a walk! And wherever you are in the world there are places to walk. If I’m travelling I love to just take off and explore, roaming around the streets or the countryside, walking along the sea front... it’s all getting those steps up lovely! If you wear a Fitbit or step counter then it can actually be a bit addictive watching your number rise, and sometimes I like to challenge myself to get higher the next day (nothing like a bit of competition with yourself!).
What are the benefits of walking?
There are lots. It can help you burn calories, keep your heart healthy and improve your stamina. A gentle stroll is nice, but to get the full benefit you do need to get your heart rate going a bit, so try some brisk walking or power walking if you can. If you’re short on time then just try to get out for 10 minutes each day.
It’s a great way to get some fresh air, too I always find that if I’ve got a lot on my mind or I’m feeling stressed out then a walk outdoors can really clear my head.
Walking can be a great way to build up to other exercises, too. If you haven’t been very active for a while, joining a gym or going for a run can make you feel a bit self conscious (although you absolutely SHOULDN’T be!). Starting out slowly is way way better than doing nothing, so just try to get yourself moving any way you can. You can just take a short, easy walk to start with and then gradually build yourself up to going further and faster.
If you have a bit of spare time, try ditching your car or public transport and walking to work or to the shops (or if it’s too far then get off a couple of stops early and walk the rest of the way). Take the stairs instead of using a lift (unless where you’re going is on like the 80th floor or something!). And if you have a dog this is brilliant as not only are they fabulous pets but they FORCE you to go out every single day, come rain or shine. Do you know what, walking in the rain is actually a pretty nice thing to do.
You can be as sociable (or not) as you like on a walk, too. It’s a great thing to do if you’ve just had a big family dinner , and instead of everybody sitting around falling asleep get yourselves out. You’ll find you chat to lots of different people and there are no distractions like the TV.
If you wanted to up the social ante you could join a walking group, there are loads of them around for people of all ages and fitness levels. Or you could try Nordic Walking you may have seen groups of people around doing this, it’s where you use the two poles as you walk and is really great as a full-body workout.
Or you could just head out on your own for a bit. I like to do this. Stick some headphones on and listen to some music or a podcast and just enter into your own little world for a bit. It’s perfect thinking time and really helps with mental decluttering. People talk about walking ‘clearing the cobwebs’ and I feel like my brain has literally had a cleanse after a walk.
Lots of love, Camille xx