It has started to get a little cooler now and earlier this week, I had to put on a few more layers. Layers are great as you can take off or add as you warm up or cool down.
I do realise that for some of you, when winter comes, exercise might be the last thing on your mind but what if you could find something that could become part of your life and had an ease to it?
Well, that’s walking, often described by health experts as “almost perfect exercise” and, it offers an amazing number of benefits. Would you believe me if I told you that a walk first thing in the morning will set you up for the day ahead? Or that a walk in the cold after a heavy lunch will help your digestion and make you feel wonderful when you return to a warm home and a hot cuppa? Even a brisk walk when you have a cold or a hangover does blow the cobwebs away.
Only 30 minutes a day
Only 30 minutes a day is what is generally prescribed and that’s not too difficult to fit in. Once you get that really built into your schedule you may find that you want to take it further and explore farther afield. Walking really helped me get to know my locality and when I take others out they often comment on places they didn’t know even though they may have lived in the area for some time. At times when I know I should walk but time is tight, I really think about fitting it into the other things I have to do. Recently a walk has often ended at the bank, dry cleaners, post office or at the supermarket and if the supermarket, I get my weight training too. At the weekend, instead of getting into the car, I walked to deliver some goods and killed two birds with one stone.
The best way to start is slowly with your goal being to build up the pace to one that is comfortable for you and where you are able to hold a conversation while you are walking. And remember that although 10,000 steps is what the world’s health experts maintain we need to do a day to keep us healthy, as I said just 30 minutes of brisk walking daily can help prevent disease, maintain weight and improve your mental wellbeing. Even better is the fact that this 30 minutes can be broken down into smaller chunks helping to fit it into your lifestyle. So a walk to the post box and back; up and down stairs instead of using lifts – you know the kind of thing. Most importantly have fun.
If you are a convert to walking, you will know the benefits for yourself so please do tell me of your favourite walks, I’m sure I could learn of new places for me. Even if you are in a different part of the country or world do share as I love to walk when I travel and you’ll be helping me, and perhaps others out. Just post them in the comment box below and if you’d like to, tell me why this is a favourite walk. Perhaps we can put together a list on the resources page.