On the first Wednesday of April put on your most comfortable shoes and go out to celebrate National Walking Day. This day encourages people to be healthy and reminds them that just thirty minutes of walking every day can have a great impact on their overall health, and help prevent diseases such as cancer, diabetes, and heart disease. So ask a friend to keep you company or put a podcast on, and get to stretching those legs and improving your mood.
History of National Walking Day
National Walking Day was established in 2007 by the American Heart Association, to promote a healthy lifestyle and get people moving. Most people don't realize just how beneficial daily walks can be for their overall emotional and physical health and well-being, so this day serves as a reminder of just how important it is to stay active and get off the sofa.
Walking doesn't have to be a chore either. You can invite someone to join you, or call a friend you haven't talked to in a while, and catch up with what's happening with them, or you can put your headphones in and enjoy your favorite podcast or playlist. In no time at all, you'll see you've already walked for the recommended 30-minutes, or even longer! It is also a great way to get to know your neighborhood better, or, if you prefer to walk in nature, it's 30-minutes you get to yourself to relax and disconnect from the stress of daily life.
Above all, walking is one of the exercises that have more overall benefits for your health. Here are some ways in which walking is good for your health:
It reduces stress and improves your sleep. Walking is a great way to clear your head, and it is proven that exercise drastically improves people's mental health. Studies have also shown that people who walk regularly are less likely to have insomnia, and tend to sleep better than those who don't.
It increases bone strength. Walking can increase bone mass, and therefore is very beneficial for those who are prone to arthritis. People who walk often are also less likely to suffer fractures.
It improves circulation. Perhaps one of the best impacts that walking has on our health. Walking improves circulation and gets the blood flowing. This means that it reduces blood pressure and the risk of suffering a stroke.
It helps with weight loss. Walking is a form of exercise, therefore it burns calories, which means that it is a great help for those trying to lose weight.
How to Celebrate National Walking Day
This is the perfect day to start a walking routine. Like with every form of exercise, the hardest part is starting. But if you make the effort to walk every day, you'll see you'll enjoy it and even crave it, and as a bonus, you'll improve your mood and health.
Here are some ways to help you start walking more regularly:
Park further away than you would normally. Whether you're going shopping, eating out, or just going to work, parking a bit further away from your destination is a great way to get your steps in. You can also do it if you use public transportation. Just get off one or two stops earlier than your usual stop.
Instead of catching up with your friends over a coffee or a drink, invite them to join you for a stroll in the park.
This is a hard one, but try to skip the elevator for the stairs.
If you live close to the center of your town, leave the car at home and do your errands on foot.
Encourage your family to start walking as well by taking a family stroll after dinner instead of sitting in front of the TV.