Eight reasons why you should walk

There’s nothing more natural or easier to do than walking. Here are eight reasons why you should make walking a part of your healthy lifestyle.
1. Better health – Regular walking can help you maintain a healthy weight, while helping to prevent or manage various health conditions including heart disease, high blood pressure and type 2 diabetes. Walking even helps strengthen your bones.
2. Mood enhancer – Exercising can actually help improve your mood and brisk walking is one of the easiest, safest ways to get in a good workout that you’ll feel good about.
3. Use it or lose it – If you don’t exercise, you’ll lose muscle tone and even coordination. Walking helps you maintain good balance and coordination
4. Keep weight off – A weight gain of even just 11-18 pounds can increase your risk of heart disease by 25 percent, according to studies. If you’re more than 25 pounds overweight, your risk goes up 200-300.
5. Live longer – A Honolulu heart study of 8,000 men found that walking just two miles a day cut the risk of death almost in half. The walkers’ risk of death was especially lower from cancer. Other studies have provided similar findings.
6. Boosts brain power – The National Council on Aging studied people 60 and older and found that walking 45 minutes a day at 16-minute mile pace increased the thinking skills of those over 60. The participants started at 15 minutes of walking and built up their time and speed. The result was that the same people were mentally sharper after taking up this walking program.
7. It’s easy to do – All you need is a good pair of walking shoes and can-do attitude.
8. Social connection – Walk with a relative, friend or group and it will increase your social fun and help pass the time. It’s a great way to enjoy the beautiful outdoors, or if you prefer control the climate and environment by walking indoors on a treadmill.
Whether you walk on a treadmill, track, neighborhood, park, etc., mix up your walk locations, it all helps. Walking is fun, easy to do and will help improve your life. Get moving today.

At Home Fitness consultant Aaron Dorksen’s blog deals with a variety of fitness topics, ranging from workout tips, motivational ideas and feature stories on how exercise impacts people’s lives. Consult a doctor before making any significant changes in your exercise routine or diet. E-mail him with comments, questions or ideas for future blogs at aaron@athomefitness.com