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XTEND FITNESS & WELLNESS

Be Inspired to Take that Walk: The Health Benefits of Walking

Going for a walk on a beautiful day is one of life’s simple luxuries that’s available to many people. Luckily, in San Antonio, there’s no shortage of beautiful days or places to enjoy! However, many people get too caught up in daily life and all of its obligations to remember to get outside and go for a walk. But here’s the thing: you’re missing out on all kinds of health benefits of walking by staying inside!

Get Inspired to Take that Walk

So, today we’re going to inspire you to get outside and take that walk by sharing some of the most notable health benefits of walking.

Let’s get started!

Health Benefits of Walking

  • Improve your cardiovascular and pulmonary fitness
  • Lowers blood pressure
  • Improves mood
  • Helps maintain muscle mass and bone density

Other Benefits of Walking

You don’t need any equipment

This isn’t technically a “health” benefit, but it’s still a benefit worth mentioning. Unlike many other forms of exercise, walking doesn’t require any equipment. Sure, you could invest in fancy shoes, headphones, or ankle weights to level up your experience, but none of that is necessary. All you need to do is get outside and get walking! This makes walking an accessible choice for most people and it can be done year-round in many climates. 

It’s free

No gym membership is required to enjoy the benefits of walking! You can simply step outside your front door and get going. Of course, you can buy a treadmill so you can walk anytime you’d like in the comfort of your home. But it’s not necessary when you have the great outdoors to explore for free.

Level Up Your Walking

Depending on your goals and where you are in your fitness journey, there are several ways to increase the benefits of walking.

Here are a few ideas to start:

  • Walk with hand weights or a weight vest
  • Choose a path with varying terrain to challenge your muscles
  • Incorporate periods of fast walking or slow jogging into your walks
  • Walking for longer periods
  • Timing yourself on the same path and striving to beat your previous time at each walk 
  • Incorporate other exercises during your walk, including stopping at park benches to do push ups, tricep dips, or step ups (there are all kinds of extra benefits to exercising outdoors like this. Learn more about them and get a sample workout in this post)

If you’re convinced of the benefits of walking but still not motivated to do it yourself, there are also several options to make walking more fun. For starters, invite a friend! Having someone to talk to on your walk has a magical effect of helping the time fly by. You can also bring your pet, or borrow a friend’s. Did you know several animal shelters are also looking for volunteer dog walkers to exercise their pets? (Learn about the City of San Antonio’s Shelter Paws Program here)

 

So, whether you head out on a trail, on a treadmill, or on a track, get out there and start enjoying all of the benefits that come from walking!