Walking: The simplest exercise regime for a healthier you

  • May 21, 2017

When suddenly you wake up from your lazy slumber and decide to resort to a healthy lifestyle, you begin by giving your psyche a dose of intrinsic motivation. You remind your unhealthy-self, why it is vital to stay fit, and find time in your hectic urban schedule for the one thing that is perhaps the most essential part of your life i.e. your own health. However, the mere mention of complex exercise regimens such as Pilates, Crossfit, Functional Training et cetera drowns your enthusiasm back in the pool of laziness. As complicated as their names are, the aforementioned exercise rituals require props such as a mini ball, foam roller, magic ring, resistance bands and what not. However, not every physical activity necessarily needs to be a complex affair. If you wish to give your body the precious gift of health, then just get up and walk. The easiest and hasslefree path to fitness is walking. An aerobic or a cardio exercise, walking stimulates the heart rate and breathing rate to increase in a way that requires pumping of oxygenated blood by the heart to deliver oxygen to working muscles. And all you need is a pair of comfortable shoes with proper arch support, firm heels, and thick flexible soles to take that first step towards a fitter you.

An aerobic or a cardio exercise, walking stimulates the heart rate and breathing rate to increase in a way that requires pumping of oxygenated blood by the heart to deliver oxygen to working muscles.

Choose the pace

Walk, run, or jog – you can choose the pace that suits you best. Just keep your hands off the snooze button on your alarm clock. If you want to be a part of the smug, toned minority but have an aversion to spending hours at the gym, then regular brisk walking at moderate to high intensity for at least 40 minutes a day, can offer all the benefits with the least potential for injury.

Benefits of walking

It is astounding how such a simple physical activity can provide innumerable benefits to our body. For starters, walking helps to lose that excessive body fat and thus prepares your body to maintain a healthy weight. It tones up your legs, arms, and even that stubborn abdominal flab. Walking can aid in preventing and managing various chronic health conditions, including heart disease, high blood pressure, and type 2 diabetes. It strengthens your heart, bones, and muscles, by improving the body’s cardiovascular system. It also boosts the composition of vitamin D, and thus, gives you energy for the day ahead.

And if you thought that walking only worked on your physical health, well think again! Various studies have proved that walking can improve your mood and can even prevent dementia – a decline in mental ability severely enough to interfere with daily life by causing, for example, memory loss. Because when you walk, just like any other form of exercise, your body releases serotonin, the natural feel-good chemical. There is also the release of endorphins, the ‘happy hormones’, which is why people are on a natural high at the end of an exercise session. Walking also helps to develop muscle endurance and strength, especially in the lower body and thus, it improves balance and coordination. It also promotes the increase of oxygen- supply in the body, which facilitates the disposal of waste products from the tissues, thus aiding the excretory functions.

Therapy for mind, body and soul!

Thus, you can walk alone, plug in your favourite music, or walk silently while observing others or having a conversation with your own thoughts. Walk, while enjoying the nature or with a friend and catch up on the things you missed or with your entire family and laugh for real instead of joining those fake laughter sessions; walking can work as a therapy for the mind, body, and soul.

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