Why then? You ask.
Because walking is one of the most undervalued activities of daily life.
Daily walking not only improves your overall wellness. It also enhances your cognitive function and reduces stress.
Why walking impacts the brain
Quite simply, the heart pumps faster when you go for a walk.
This means more oxygen-rich blood and other vital nutrients are circulated to your muscles. Naturally, any excess waste products will also be more efficiently removed from your body.
An increase of blood flow also benefits the body’s organs, which includes the brain. This can reduce the risk of vascular and degenerative diseases. Further, it boosts our creativity and the mental “flow” state.
Many experiments have shown that after or during exercise – even very mild exertion – people perform better on tests of memory and attention.
If you're thinking improved mental clarity and a refreshed state of being is good reason for moving your body, you're right!
Walking can therefore be the key to tapping into your mental muscle.
This is very inspiring for those who actively want to promote their mental health and spare themselves the stress of not moving enough.
How walking mitigates stress
As walking is a low intensity/impact activity, it can speed up recovery. All low impact activities mitigate stress in the joints AND in the central nervous system. This means that stress symptoms can be alleviated.
During the active coordinated gait cycle, musculature of the legs, arms, and core become engaged in a reciprocal pattern in an on-and-off nature.
As the body is moved forward during the gait cycle, the actions of the muscle send pressure through the lymphatic and venous systems. This pushes any excess fluid that’s accumulated through local stress back into central circulation. From there, the excess fluid will be excreted.
Managing inflammation is the name of the game in recovery and stress reduction and walking is the simplest, easiest and most accessible way to do it.
How long should I walk for?
Try a short stretch of 10-15 minutes at a time daily.
Then gradually increase your frequency; go twice, thrice and even four times a day. Just start with what feels right. Your body will guide you is you listen to it.
This will stimulate your thought processes, neural regeneration and boost your overall feeling of wellness throughout the day.
So now you know all the advantages of walking, what are you going to do?
PS there’s also the added benefit of not sitting for hours on end, slumped in posture and then trying to perform at a physically higher level thereafter.
So my recommendation to you all?