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Walk Until You Can’t Walk No More…..

“Walking is the only form of exercise in which participation rates do not decline in the middle and later years.”

You’d think a simple activity like walking would be just that, simple. But according to an article on medicinenet.com, fewer than 50% of American adults do enough exercise to gain any health or fitness benefits. Although walking isn’t a cure-all, it does have numerous benefits to both your health and wellbeing.  Here are 15 reasons to walk:

  1. Helps to prevent Type 2 Diabetes

The Diabetes Prevention Program showed that walking 150 minutes per week and losing just 7% of your body weight (12-15 pounds) can reduce your risk of diabetes by 58%.

  1. Strengthens your heart

In one study, mortality rates among retired menwho walked less than one mile per day were nearly twice that among those who walked more than two miles per day.

Women in the Nurse’s Health Study (72,488 female nurses) who walked three hours or more per week reduced their risk of a heart attack or other coronary event by 35% compared with women who did not walk.

  1. Good for your bones

Research shows that postmenopausal women who walk approximately one mile each day have higher whole-body bone density than women who walk shorter distances, and walking is also effective in slowing the rate of bone loss from the legs.

  1. Improves physical function

Research shows that walking improves fitness and physical function and prevents physical disability in older persons.

  1. Can do it at any age

Research shows that walking improves fitness and physical function and prevents physical disability in older persons. Research also shows that walking improves fitness and physical function and prevents physical disability in older persons.

  1. Can do it any place

All you need is a good pair of shoes.  Around your house, while traveling, it doesn’t matter, your feet are always with you.

  1. Reduces risk of breast & colon cancers

Women who performed the equivalent of one hour and 15 minutes to two and a half hours per week of brisk walking had an 18% decreased risk of breast cancer compared with inactive women. Many studies have shown that exercise can prevent colon cancer, and even if an individual person develops colon cancer, the benefits of exercise appear to continue both by increasing quality of life and reducing mortality.

  1. Makes you smarter

In a study on walking and cognitive function, researchers found that women who walked the equivalent of an easy pace at least 1.5 hours per week had significantly better cognitive function and less cognitive decline than women who walked less than 40 minutes per week. Think about that!

  1. Eco-friendly

In a study on walking and cognitive function, researchers found that women who walked the equivalent of an easy pace at least 1.5 hours per week had significantly better cognitive function and less cognitive decline than women who walked less than 40 minutes per week. Think about that! In a study on walking and cognitive function, researchers found that women who walked the equivalent of an easy pace at least 1.5 hours per week had significantly better cognitive function and less cognitive decline than women who walked less than 40 minutes per week. Think about that!

  1. Popular & preferred

Walking is easily the most popular form of exercise,” notes the President’s Council on Physical Fitness as well as the American Podiatric Medical Association. Some 89.8 million Americans walked for exercise in 2007 (a 2.5% increase from the previous year), making it the #1 form of exercise, according to the National Sporting Goods Association. They went on to say “Fitness walking” has increased 34% in popularity in the last 20 years to become a Top 10 sports/recreational activity in the U.S., with more than 36 million active participants.

11. Gives you energy

“We found that there was a clear and strong relationship between the number of steps they took and their overall mood and energy level,” said Thayer, author of Calm Energy: How People Regulate Mood with Food and Exercise. “It really indicates that we’re talking about a wider phenomenon here than just walk more and feel more energy. We’re talking about walk more, be happier, have higher self-esteem, be more into your diet and the nutritiousness of your diet.”

The study was one of four Thayer and student researchers have done over the last several years. “In this whole series of studies that we’ve done, the more you walk in a day, the more energy you experience,” Thayer noted.

  1. Tones your muscles

Use it or lose it. Regular walking will help to keep your muscles toned.

  1. Provides a little adventure

According to a consumer survey from the Adventure Travel Trade Association, a solid 45% of travelers prefer “soft nature” activities such as “bird watching and walking.”

  1. Burns calories

A study of sedentary women showed that short bouts of brisk walking (three 10-minute walks per day) resulted in similar improvements in fitness and were at least as effective in decreasing body fatness as long bouts (one 30-minute walk per day).

  1. Good for your brain

In a study on walking and cognitive function, researchers found that women who walked the equivalent of an easy pace at least 1.5 hours per week had significantly better cognitive function and less cognitive decline than women who walked less than 40 minutes per week. Think about that!

References:

http://www.medicinenet.com/walking/article.htm

http://www.countrywalkers.com/staticfiles/CountryWalkers/Articles/About%20Us%20Articles/Talking%20the%20Walk.pdf

http://www.csulb.edu/misc/inside/archives/vol_58_no_4/1.htm

 

 

 

 

 

 

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