Walking is the most therapeutic activity that you can do. It restores hormonal balance in the body and allows us to relieve the stress so that we can retake a deeper breath.
Where should I walk?
When we start walking regularly every day, we will notice many positive things. But where should I go for a walk and does it matter? If you have a busy job and you walk all of the time or you just simply visit a gym, then this is excellent news for you, because you will have all of the healthful benefits of walking daily. The only thing that is missing is sunlight and fresh brisk of air. When we take our time for a walk in nature, not only we step into a new environment full of life, but we get essential sunlight. Our eyes get relaxed because we don’t look at our phones, hopefully. We get to discover new places, meet new people, and unplug our minds, just with a simple walk.
Why is sunlight so important?
Lack of sunlight leads to fatigue and a lack of motivation and concentration. When we are not exposed to sunlight, we get a deficiency of vitamin D, and this let alone can have a considerable effect on our well-being. Depression and other health problems are much more prevalent in countries where there is less sunlight exposure. These include the Nordic countries primarily.
If you live in a region where there is little to no sun exposure, or it is that kind of season, I strongly recommend you take a Vitamin D supplement in combination with Vitamin K2, which can help with the absorption of vitamin D.
When it is dark, the body releases the hormone melatonin, which promotes fatigue and helps us to have a deeper state of sleep. That is excellent news for resting, but not for daily activities. We need our concentration and focus. When enough light is released, the release of ‘hormones of happiness’ begins, such as serotonin and noradrenaline.
What are the benefits of walking?
Lower your blood pressure
Dynamic Exercise of moderate-intensity 50-75% VO2 max (brisk walking, cycling) 40-60min, 3-5x a week. That effectively lowers blood pressure. What is VO2 max, you may ask?
VO2 max is known as maximal oxygen uptake. It shows how good a person can perform by measuring the maximum amount of oxygen that can be utilized during intense exercise.
Loose body fat with walking
Walking is the best way to lose body fat all over your body. Unlike running, walking is much less strenuous and stressful for the body, which means that recovery will be faster, and we will be able to take walks daily, while running is very exhausting. Running is also stressful on our joints and especially knees. It can very quickly demotivate us for losing body fat for good. Meanwhile, walking is therapeutic and less tiring.
Running has its place, but many times, walking is a better choice for weight loss. Because walking is less intense than running, a higher percentage of calories burned comes from body fat. That is good news if you are trying to build muscle. Now don’t get me wrong, running does not burn muscle, but it sure doesn’t help with making it, unless you’re doing some kind of sprints or HIIT (high-intensity interval training).
Burning calories while walking
Brisk walking can burn a lot of calories, almost as much as running! But just how many calories do we consume while we are walking?
Up to 300+ KCal are consumed within 1 hour of walking. Running would burn around 400+ KCal at the same amount of time. But these are just estimates; it varies from person to person. Body composition (how much muscle mass and body fat percentage you have) is critical while calculating how many calories get burned while walking. Muscle revs up metabolism, making it easier to lose body fat. Having increased muscle mass also takes more effort to move around. Therefore you need to spend more energy, again increasing the energy expenditure. That is why I recommend implementing some kind of resistance training, along with your type of cardio.
Better sleep quality
There is no question about it. Any type of exercise will help with your sleep quality, and walking is no exception. If we get a good night’s sleep, we understand the needed rest for our daily activities and tasks. Everyone deserves to feel rested. That is is why I recommend any type of business, but there is something special about walks in nature. Releasing all of your worries and discovering new places is one of many things; walking can bring. If you could just unplug your mind for 30 minutes a day with a simple walk in the forest, you can relieve stress and live a longer, healthier life.
Regular walks increase blood flow to the body and thus allow better blood flow to the brain. That makes us more alert during the day, with better concentration, focus, and memory. Those who are physically active regularly are easier to learn and more motivated to make new achievements and are less prone to depression. Hormones of happiness are released when exercising and walking. Therefore, after physical activity, we are happier and more satisfied with ourselves, as we have done something good for our health. A healthy attitude to exercise is vital because this is the only way we will return to the activity with a proper mindset.