If your goal is to become healthier keep reading…
Walking is, by far, the most underrated exercise out there. Why? Because with the exception of athletic shoe companies, it’s hard to monetize walking. There’s no “Walking” industry. Instead, you have elaborate workout equipment and routines that are marketed through cringe-worthy infomercials.
The fact that the shake-weight exists, proves that marketing is what drives the fitness industry.
Walking is also not the sexiest exercise. No one envisions bodybuilders and figure models getting their sweat on, walking around the block in spandex. However, the fact remains that walking has more benefits than any other physical activity because it,
Here are 9 AWESOME reasons to walk everyday:
IMPROVES GLYCEMIC CONTROL
When we eat, our body releases insulin to clear the excess glucose out of our blood. The more insulin that’s released, the more fat we store. A short 15 minute walk after eating has been shown to increase the efficiency at which your body clears glucose out the blood meaning less insulin, and less fat storage (3).
LOWERS BLOOD PRESSURE
Lowers blood pressure. High blood pressure, also known as hypertension, can lead to stroke, heart attack and heart failure. However, just 30 minutes of walking per day can significantly decrease blood pressure for those suffering from hypertension (4). You’re heart is the only muscle in the body that is always working, best treat it right.
INCREASES LIFE SPAN
Increases life span. Researchers have proven that walking everyday will increase your lifespan by a ratio of 1:3 (5). Meaning that every hour spent walking will add 3 hours to your life. This does not apply to cigarette smokers, motorcycle enthusiasts, or Tiger trainers at the circus.
MAKE YOU SMARTER
It will make you smarter by improving your memory and cognitive control = meaning you score higher on tests than you would have without exercise (6,7). If it’s available to you, try talking a walk in nature. Separating ourselves from the endless stream of media can also enhance creativity (8).
BOOSTS YOUR IMMUNE SYSTEM
Boosts your immune system. Your immune system is made up of cells called killer T cells. These are the white blood cells that float around in our bloodstream, looking for pathogens to destroy. Walking, according to researchers at Loyola University, increases the number of killer T cells in our blood which helps fight disease (9).
PREVENTS KNEE ARTHRITIS
Prevents knee arthritis. Your knees are imperative to mobility, and can make the difference between a marathon runner and someone in a wheel chair. Take care of them, walking just 6,000 steps per day significantly reduces the chance of functional knee limitations down the line (10). Much like muscle atrophy, if you don’t work your joints, they’ll deteriorate.
REDUCES RISK OF RESPIRATORY PROBLEMS
Significantly reduces the risk of respiratory problems. Everybody likes breathing, we wouldn’t be able to enjoy much of life without it. Researchers found that patients with COPD, which includes chronic bronchitis and emphysema, who walked an average of 3 kilometers per WEEK (1.8 miles), significantly reduced the number of times they went to the hospital (11).
Since millions of Americans suffer from some form of lung disease, walking is a great way to steer clear of hospitals and god-awful hospital food.
IMPROVES NEUROLOGICAL AREAS
Improve neurological motor function, mood, and attention/response. Walking is a stressor that forces our bodies and mind to activate on a low-impact but highly-effective level. Patients with Parkinson’s disease who went on three, 45 minute walks per week, saw a 15% increase in mood and motor function (12).
Most people spend time researching and buying the most high-tech fitness equipment, only to be disappointed by the product or not motivated enough to use it. Walking is free, not overly demanding, and one of the most social forms of exercise. Just don’t do it while texting (13).
What do you think of this? Do you think you will start walking?