If I were to pick one exercise to stay fit it would be walking. Walking is an exercise that almost anyone can do.
The major benefits of walking are:
1. It helps to maintain weight.Walking will burn calories. The number of calories you burn will depend on the pace and distance of your walk.
2. Reduces the risk of coronary heart disease. According to the American Heart Association walking improves your circulation and will aid in reducing heart disease.
3. Reduces the risk of non-insulin dependent type 2 diabetes. This is also according to the American Heart Association.
4. It supports your joints and reduces the risk of osteoporosis. A Brigham and Women’s Hospital, Boston, study of post-menopausal women found that 30 minutes of walking each day reduced their risk of hip fractures by 40 percent.
5. It aids in digestion. According to a study in 2008 by German researchers walking aided digestion. Walking, they found, sped the rate at which food moved through the stomach.
6. It aids in your thinking. Walking allows you to clear your mind and think. You will get the benefit of natural endorphins being released in your body. This also improves your mood.
7. Improves your balance and coordination. This will naturally improve by adding walking on different paths and surfaces.
Walking is a great way to get started with an exercise program. If you are just starting to exercise the first thing to do is get a check up from your doctor. This is a great thing to do annually.
There is very little equipment required to walk. I would recommend a good pair of walking shoes to avoid foot injury. Good shoes will help you with rolling from your heel to your toe.
You can measure your distance with a pedometer or other device that measures your steps and distance. The iPhone as an example has the health app that will measure your distance.
Start out with a short walk around the block. Add distance to your walk every time you walk until you can get to at least the 30 minute mark.
Walking is great because you can do it anywhere. If you live around lakes, oceans or mountains you can plan walks to enjoy the beauty of the outdoors.