How often do you spend your day in front of a screen? Yes, a screen can be classed anything from a smartphone, laptop, tablet, television, etc. Whatever your estimated time length is, we feel the majority of us could be swapping that screen time for a time out walking.
Likewise, it may also be true for some of us that we may walk every day, but do we fully take in each stride for what it should be?
We reckon, no.
A lot of us get caught up on prolonged use of screen time and the constant rush of the 9-5 life, we never seem to appreciate our wonderful legs. In fact, we take them for granted.
Our legs give us the power of walking, a simple and effective exercise which has numerous benefits. The truth is, you don’t have to walk for long to reap its advantages. We simply suggest walking 30 minutes a day!
1. Improves Cardiac Health
While we need all of our organs to function well, there is one in particular, which deserves an extra bit of T.L.C. than the rest, our heart. Brisk walking gets our blood circulating in our bodies and therefore gets the heart pumping more. You are exercising your whole body, but doing this allows you to strengthen your heart at the same time.
The circulation of the blood while walking also loosens blood vessels and allows for a more natural flow. Which, as a result, lowers our blood pressure and causes less strain on our heart.
2. Lowers Risk of Type 2 Diabetes
When you walk, your body will use up more glycogen as a type of glucose (sugar) stored in your muscles. This allows adequate blood sugar levels, but it also increases insulin sensitivity, which helps the muscles long afterward retain energy.
It also prevents high blood sugar levels in the blood and the body to regulate insulin, which reduces the long term risk of contracting type 2 diabetes.
3. Can Reduce Body Fat
Just simply walking for 30 minutes a day can burn calories. Depending on your body type, it has been estimated that walking 1 mile can burn up to100 calories! Similarly, to achieve this, you have to walk or powerwalk either briskly; a simple stroll won’t do it.
When you exercise, your body is working hard to gain energy and kickstart your metabolism, burning into your fat reserves. If you’re looking to shift that extra bit of weight and walk briskly for 30 minutes each day, who knows what you could achieve?
4. Strengthens The Muscles
Walking regularly for just 30 minutes a day can strengthen and tone your muscles. When you walk, it’s good practice to keep your arms outside of your pockets, leaving them to swing backward and forwards, which then works the muscles, sculpting your triceps and biceps.
Similarly, walking strengthens muscles on your legs such as thighs, glutes, calves, and hamstrings. If you’re looking to tone up with an exercise that is not too intense, we’d recommend walking!
5. Lowers Your Cancer Risk
If you walk for 30 minutes or even a mile a day, you could reduce your risk of getting certain cancers by 40%, reports The Guardian. It’s estimated by implementing a walking routine into your life; you can reduce breast or prostate cancer risk.
Similarly, if you’re a female, you can reduce the number of certain hormones that get released in your body, which triggers breast and endometrial cancer. The longer you walk, the better!
6. Boosts Your Mood
When you walk, it can create a positive effect on your mood. You’ve probably heard so many people mentioning to go outside and walk when you are down or feeling angry.
This is because exercise triggers your brain to release hormones known as endorphins. As a result, the excess production of endorphins from walking allows you to feel a natural high and creates a sense of positivity.
7. Improves Your Joints
Taking part in walks for just 30 minutes will allow more blood flow to circulate within your body. One of the areas your blood will reach is your cartilage. Which then protects your bones, which surrounds your joins and strengthens them.
Similarly, it also triggers the joints’ fluid to move, which then lubricates them, preventing inflammation or stiffness. As a result, walking regularly for 30 minutes can also reduce your risk of getting arthritis.
8. Better Your Sleep
When you walk, it stimulates your brain to release a hormone called melatonin. It’s recommended that the best time to walk to stimulate is in the morning. Walking for 30 minutes a day in the morning will allow help to set your body’s natural circadian rhythm. Likewise, regular walking has been shown to help those who are suffering from insomnia.
9. Reduces Stress and Anxiety
When you are stressed, going for a 30-minute walk outside may take your mind away from your ongoing battle with your mind. Not only are you getting fresh air, but you’re allowing your mind to take a break from your stress.
Further to this, walking helps you loosen other parts of the body, and by having a great posture or form can help relieve tension out of particular body parts.
Walking for 30 minutes can help you with anxiety issues too. Often when you feel anxious, you may feel like you’re having an ‘out of body’ experience.
Walking allows you to reconnect and get back in touch with your psychical body again, gaining control of your anxiety.
Moreover, it serves as a fantastic activity giving you time to think and reflect.
10. Reduce Risk of Osteoporosis
We mentioned walking for 30 minutes can improve your joints. It can also enhance your bone strength. The exercise increases resistance and flexibility, which strengthens the bones. Therefore frequent 30-minute walks can help improve your bone mass and, as a result, reduce your risk of getting osteoporosis.
11. Improve Your Breathing
Regular brisk walking can increase your lung capacity. Overtime if you walk for 30 minutes frequently, it will allow you to breathe easier. Similarly, you will feel more energized due to your more substantial and more robust lung capacity; you will be able to take in more oxygen, allowing it to get to other parts of your body.
12. Slows Progression Of Alzheimer’s Disease
Walking is a form of exercise, and regular 30-minute walks can help stimulate the brain. Studies have shown due to increased blood flow and the regular release of hormones, it can help protect the brain’s structure.
As a result, it can reduce the rate of mental decline and help reduce the risk of people getting Alzheimer’s. Similarly, walking is equally beneficial to those with the disease, as studies have shown it slowers mental deterioration.
13. Help Live A Longer Life
Due to its numerous benefits, regularly walking for 30 minutes a day can help you live longer. This is because it can reduce your chances of disease, mental decline, and mental illnesses. Overall, it can optimize your health, allowing you to have better health odds than sedentary people.
14. Gets You Outside
Sometimes, we can all become victims of staying at home after a long day of work. Arguably, we can spend too much time indoors and become comfortable with our environment, using our home as a fortress, protecting us from the outside world.
However, walking allows you to breathe in the fresh air and stops you from being a hermit. If you stay in too long and don’t get out, it may lead to more mental health problems.
15. Improve Digestion
Walking can help increase the time it takes from the food in your stomach to move to your intestines. As a result, it’s said that it can improve your digestion and lowering your chases of heartburn or acid reflux.
There you have it, 15 benefits of walking for 30 minutes. We also have no doubt many more being discovered by researchers all the time.
We challenge you to implement 30-minute brisk walks into your day and watch you reap the benefits. Try and do it without your screen, though, and take in what you’ve got around you.
What have you got to lose?