Physical activity can be hard. Especially when trying to juggle work and family life. You don’t have to go hit the gym everyday to receive many of the health benefits related to physical activity. Squeezing in just 10 minutes of physical activity a day still has shown to have many health benefits. Walking can be a great place to start and it doesn’t require any special equipment. You can always grab a friend or family member to walk with you too. Having a buddy can make it easier to get moving! All you need is a pair of comfy shoes, a walking trail, water, and some good tunes!
Benefits of walking:
- Improve heart health
- Strengthens bones and muscles
- Increases energy levels
- Reduces stress and improves mood
- Helps improve issues related to heart disease, diabetes, and high blood pressure
- Improves balance
- Improves joint pain
- Improves circulation
There are multiple types of walking:
- Brisk walking: This type of walking is a fairly quick pace that provides a gentle workout that still has heart healthy benefits.
- Interval walking: This means you will “speed walk” for a short time and then walk at a comfortable pace for a short time. This type of activity will improve heart health and burn more calories than regular walking.
- Inclined walking: Walking on an incline mimics health benefits of running without the toll on your body. You can also burn more calories and strengthen your lower body muscles.
Just pick whichever works best for you!
Getting active can be challenging but you don’t have to make big changes all at one time. You may find it helpful to start by creating goals for yourself! Here are some ways to create your own goals:
Step 1: Pick a small goal. Make sure it is specific, measurable, realistic, and works well with your lifestyle. Pick an activity, give yourself a time frame, and be sure that it’s something that you can really see yourself doing.
Example: Let’s say you want to start walking for 10 minutes a day on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday.
Step 2: Be consistent with your goal. It may be helpful for you to track it down in a notebook or planner. This way you can see how well your goal is working for you. If you find that you aren’t able to stick with it because it’s too challenging, revisit step 1!
Example: Let’s say you have successfully been able to meet your goal of 10 minutes a day three times a week.
Step 3: If you are feeling ready for another challenge, create another goal for yourself. Continue to create new goals and challenge yourself! Don’t be afraid to get creative and try new things.
Example: Let’s say you want to start walking for 15 minutes a day on Monday, Wednesday, and Friday with faster intervals throughout your walk.
It takes time and patients to make progress and every small goal reached deserves to be celebrated!
If you have been getting ready for our Let’s Get Moving 5k, check out our training tips!