Without a doubt, walking is one of the easiest ways to start exercising.
Even if you hate working out, walking is a great way to get into cardio exercise. Plus, a little walking is better than no exercise at all. It gets your blood flowing, strengthens muscles, and helps your body burn fat.
One recent study found that walking just two hours per week can start reducing your risk of disease that may otherwise shorten your life.
Still need some convincing to get moving?
Here’s a list of 20 benefits of walking daily to share with everyone you know:
No matter where you are, you can go take a walk. There’s no class to sign up for or hours of operation when it comes to walking, especially when you do it outside. When and how you do it is totally up to you.
2. It’s Free
You can literally walk anywhere. In your living room. Around the block. Up and down your stairs. The options are endless, and you don’t need to scan a gym card to do it!
3. Weight Loss
When walking is paired with a healthy diet, it can promote weight loss. The more you walk, you’ll lose inches and even pounds — reducing your risk of diabetes and obesity.
4. Lower Diabetes Risk
A recent study published by Harvard University shows 30 minutes of brisk walking can reduce risk of developing type 2 diabetes by a whopping 30 percent.
5. Live Longer
A recent study found that gentle exercise like walking — even once a week — can cut the risk of an early death by almost 20 percent.
6. No Learning Curve
You’ve been walking since you were a baby. The beauty of walking is the ease with which the human body does it. There’s no tricky poses to hold; there’s no challenging equipment to master. You put on your shoes and start moving.
7. Socializing Opportunity
You can walk alone or have friends join you. It’s a great way to burn calories while catching up on everything from family news to celebrity gossip. Families can walk together after dinner, too, as a nice way to unwind before bed.
8. Reduces Heart Issues
One study found that walking 5½ miles per week can reduce the risk for cardiovascular issues. The study found that walking longer stretches at a faster pace also increases protection from heart problems.
9. Decreases Obesity Risk
For every 0.62 mile walked daily, it leads to a 5% decrease in becoming obese, according to an American Journal of Preventive Medicine study.
10. Good for Family Health
Walking your kids to school is a great way to bond, but it’s also good for kids’ health, too. Walking has been shown to improve children’s memory, boosts creativity, mood, and overall learning abilities.
11. Helps With Creativity
A study published in the Journal of Experimental Psychology: Learning, Memory, and Cognition found people who needed to boost creativity thought of better ideas while walking than just sitting. If you need to be creative, take a walk to get the ideas flowing.
12. Adjusts to Your Fitness Level
Whether you’re a beginner or advanced walker, there’s ways to make your walk a good cardio workout, too. Beginners can gradually increase pace; intermediate walkers can add light hand weights. Advanced walkers may consider adding in stopping points to introduce walking lunges while holding hand weights for an extra challenge.
Walking doesn’t need to be boring. If you’re walking solo, you can simply enjoy the sounds of nature. Or turn on your favorite music and get moving. Podcasts and audiobooks are also great ways to help a walk go by quickly. Bringing along a friend or furry companion can add extra incentive to walk a little longer, too.
14. Cuts Down Sugar Cravings
Studies from the University of Exeter showed that a short 15-minute walk can curb the urge to eat chocolate during stressful situations. Walking may also reduce the desire to eat sugary snacks.
15. Improves Immunity
Want to avoid the worst of cold and flu season? A study of over 1,000 participants discovered those who walked at least 5 days a week for 20 minutes at a time had 43% fewer sick days than those who exercise less than once per week.
16. Reduces the Risk of Breast Cancer
The American Cancer Society found that women who walk a minimum of 7 hours weekly have a 14% lower risk of developing breast cancer once menopause starts.
17. Can Improve Mental Health
Exercise has long been proven to help with mental and physical fitness. Psychologists found that a 10-minute walk can be just as beneficial as a 45-minute workout in reducing anxiety and depression.
18. Eases Joint Pain Caused by Arthritis
Regular walking can alleviate arthritis pain since it circulates fluid that brings oxygen to the joints while also removing inflammation.
19. Lowers Blood Pressure
Depending on your overall health, a doctor may recommend consistent aerobic exercise. Walking for at least 30 minutes daily can help with blood pressure reduction.
20. Get Focused
Feeling a little scatterbrained? A brief yet brisk walk may help you with sharp decision-making, according to an article by Harvard Health Publishing.
Get Walking Today
Walking is one of the best ways to get in exercise with little effort.
If you're ready for the benefits of moderate exercise without having to sign up for a gym membership, walking is your free pass to get in shape. Not only does walking improve your physical health, but your mental health benefits as well.
And for most people working in desk jobs, it’s harmful to do too much sitting.
How to get employees walking:
- Sponsor a walking day
- Set up a walking club
- Get everyone fitted for new sneakers
- Encourage power walks for breaks
Ready to get walking? Stand up and get those steps in starting today! Even if your walking sessions are broken up throughout the day, every step counts. A little walking is better than no walking.
Interested in getting your office staff moving more? Download our free guide: How to Make Your Office More Active for Little to No Cost!