Walking briskly can help you build stamina, burn excess calories and make your heart healthier.
You don’t have to walk for hours. A brisk 10-minute daily walk has lots of health benefits and counts towards your recommended 150 minutes of weekly exercise.
Wear shoes or trainers that are comfortable, provide adequate support and don’t cause blisters. If you’re walking to work, you could wear your usual work clothes with a comfy pair of shoes and change shoes when you get there. For long walks take some water, healthy snacks and invest in a waterproof jacket and some specialist walking shoes for more challenging routes.
A brisk walk is about three miles an hour, which is faster than a stroll. One way to tell if you’re walking briskly is if you can still talk but can’t sing the words to a song.
The Active 10 app on your smartphone tells you when you’re walking fast enough and suggests ways to fit in some more brisk walking. The easiest way to walk more is to make walking a habit. Think of ways to include walking in your daily routine. Examples include:
– using the stairs instead of the lift
– leaving the car behind for short journeys
– walking the kids to school
– doing a regular walk with a friend
– going for a stroll with family or friends after dinner
IN THE CITY
Walkit has an interactive walk planner to help you find the best walking route. Each suggested route includes your journey time, calorie burn, step count and carbon saving.
LISTEN TO MUSIC
Walking while listening to music or a podcast can take your mind off the effort. Music can also get you into a rhythm and help you walk faster. You’ll be surprised at how fast the time goes when you’re walking to your favourite tunes.
Add variety to your walks. You don’t have to travel to the countryside to find a rewarding walk. Towns and cities offer interesting walks, including parks, heritage trails, canal towpaths, riverside paths, commons, woodlands, heaths and nature reserves. For inspiring walks, visit Walk Unlimited.
See more at: nhs.uk