7 Reasons Why You Want To Start Walking Today...#4 Is Surprising

What is one thing that Steve Jobs, Albert Einstein, Winston Churchill, Virginia Wolf and Henry David Thoreau have in common? They all had a regular practice of walking. They understood the incredible value that walking had on the body and the brain.

Henry David Thoreau famously said “Me thinks that the moment my legs begin to move, my thoughts begin to flow.”

And while creativity is one of the many benefits of walking, there are several other surprising reasons why you may want to get those legs moving too.

  1. Lose weight and belly fat- For those people who cringe at the thought of going to a gym or yoga class, fear not, you can walk instead. Studies show that a regular walking program can help you lose weight and reduce that stubborn belly fat.

The average recommended time for exercise is 150 minutes per week. However, for greater weight loss results, the American College of Sports Medicine suggests 200-300 minutes of moderate intensity walking per week.

Note: it’s important to pair that with a healthy nutritional plan. Even 300 minutes of walking won’t win over a diet of cheeseburgers and ice-cream.

  1. Immune system- Walking and other physical exercise increases the amount of disease fighting white blood cells in your body. It also reduces stress and inflammation which proactively helps prevent disease.

This powerful Harvard health report concludes, “A study of over 1,000 men and women found that those who walked at least 20 minutes a day, at least 5 days a week, had 43% fewer sick days than those who exercised once a week or less.” And those who did get sick recovered much more quickly.

  1. Heart health- Walking just 30 minutes a day can reduce your risk of heart disease and stroke by nearly 35%. It also helps lower your blood pressure and blood cholesterol.

 The good news is it doesn’t have to happen all at once. You can divide those 30 minutes into three, 10-minute intervals throughout the day. I highly walking breaks and walking meetings– they will increase your energy and help your heart.

People often ask, “Do I have to walk fast?” Well, yes, if you specifically want to increase your cardiovascular strength, it’s best to pick up the pace and do some brisk walking for ½ an hour at least 3 times a week. Otherwise, you can walk at a comfortable pace, and you will still reap the rewards. 

  1. Reduce Sugar Cravings- If you have a sweet tooth, you definitely want to read this. Two different studies from the University of Exeter showed that walking as little as 15 minutes a day can help reduce the craving for chocolate.

And another Austrian study tested two groups of participants- one group walked on treadmills for 15 min a day and the other group did not exercise at all. Once again, the walkers had significantly less desire to eat “any sugary” treat.

Scientists have found that sugar is 8 times more addictive than cocaine!  SO if you’re looking to kick that habit, START walking.

  1. Joint health- Walking is a low impact exercise that increases fluid, oxygen, and nutrients to your cartilage and joints. This reduces stiffness and pain. It also increases muscle tone and range of motion keeping us nimble and able to maintain a healthy and active lifestyle.
  2. Improve Mood – Scientists have found that just 20 minutes of walking a day can reduce the stress hormone cortisol and release the feel-good endorphins, dopamine, and serotonin hormones. It also generates higher levels of a natural anti-depressant BDNF or “miracle gro” for the brain.  

In fact, when randomly assigned adults reduced their daily step count, 88% became more depressed. Within 1 week they reported a 31% decline in life satisfaction.

And while I’m a big believer in the 10,000-step goal, apparently the “magic” daily step count to reduce anxiety and depression and increase life satisfaction is 5,649.

Exercise is so important in helping with anxiety and depression that countries like New Zealand and Australia prescribe exercise “before” anti-depressants.

  1. Creativity- Have you ever gone out for a walk and suddenly thought of that great idea? That’s not a coincidence. A Stanford study found that a person’s creative output increased nearly 60% when walking and shortly after. Surprisingly, it didn’t matter whether the walking was done inside or outside.

Also, when tested against people who remained seated, 100 percent of those who walked were able to generate at least one high quality idea compared to 50 percent of the non-walkers.

Walking reduces anxiety, increases focus and helps put you into a flow state which is ideal for creative thinking.

So if you need some inspiration, go for a walk. It’s probably not a mistake that I came up with the idea of Moticise (movement and mindset) while on a treadmill!!!!



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