Do you think of walking as simply a way of getting from A to B? Or are you a self-declared walk-aholic that loves nothing more than to lose yourself in your walks? It doesn’t matter whether you walk the dog, are a race walker or an avid tramper, when people ask if you exercise, you should no longer feel embarrassed to say you’re “just walking”.
Regular walking can lower the risk of heart disease, stroke, asthma, some cancers and help control type 2 diabetes. And you don’t need to pound the pavement for long to get results: a study at Arizona State University suggests that three 10-minute walks a day can be more effective at keeping blood pressure in a healthy range than a single 30-minute workout! With around 3.5 million Australians living with high blood pressure – a major risk factor for heart disease – it’s time to get walking.
Walk it off
It’s a sad fact: Australia is ranked as one of the fattest nations in the world. More than 17 million of us are overweight or obese, including one in four children. Do you battle with the balance of how much you eat and how much you burn off? Make walking your daily ally and see what a difference 30 minutes of brisk walking every day can make.
Boost your brain
Have you noticed how much better you feel after a walk? Like any form of exercise, walking releases happy endorphins that lift your spirit and help to relieve depression. What’s more, an Australian study has found that after six months of moderate exercise, participants had improved memory and thinking functions. Now that’s a great reason to put on those walking shoes!