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Walking for Optimal Health

By Donna Stark

Whether it's through the neighborhood, beside a beach, or on a treadmill, it seems that more and more people are lacing up their shoes and leaving their home to get a daily walk in. And that's great, because walking is one of the best forms of exercise there is. It's easy on the joints, you can do it anywhere, and it doesn't require any special equipment. In addition to that, it also provides so many health benefits! You really can't go wrong with a daily walk, so what's stopping you? It's time to get moving!

Benefits of Walking

Forget about the ease and convenience of walking, let's get straight to the important stuff ... all of the health benefits you will receive. Take a look at what walking can do for your overall health and wellness.

  • Helps you lose or maintain weight
  • Reduces the risk of chronic disease and illness
  • Improves sleep and boosts energy
  • Restores joint and muscle function
  • Relieves stress and anxiety

Getting Started

Sure, walking doesn't require any great skill or equipment, but you still need to focus on what you are doing so you can reach all of your health and fitness goals. Here are some suggestions on how to successfully incorporate walking into your daily routine.

  • Length of time - Shoot for 30 minutes of brisk walking at least five days a week
  • Intensity - Walk fast enough so that your heart rate and breathing increase, but not so fast that you are struggling to breathe
  • Footwear - Make sure your shoes are properly fitted and offer plenty of support
  • Clothing/Socks - Choose moisture-wicking fabrics, weather-appropriate items, and socks that help prevent blisters
  • Fitness trackers - If you are interested in keeping track of your progress, invest in technology that calculates your speed, distance, and pace

Going Forward

You are all ready now, so lace up your shoes and head outside for better health! Start with an easy pace to warm up your body, then increase the intensity after a few minutes. If you would like to accelerate your weight loss, build strength, or enhance your other workouts, you can add some more challenging aspects to your walk. Here are some ideas.

  • Speed up - Add some faster bursts of walking during your workout  
  • Climb some hills - Choose a path (or setting on the treadmill) that includes inclines
  • Increase the time/distance - Walk longer than what you would normally do
  • Increase the frequency - Add more walks into your weekly schedule by walking to the store or work
  • Add fitness elements - Try incorporating some light weights and lunges into your walks

Walking for Better Health

If you are looking for an easy way to get fit while still being kind to your joints, join the millions of other people who incorporate walking into their daily routines! It's the perfect way to look and feel your best!

To learn more about your health, wellness, and fitness, see your local chiropractor at The Joint Chiropractic in Denver, Colo.

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