Did you know walking for 30 minutes a day could reduce your risk of heart disease?
Walking is simple. It has the lowest dropout rate of any physical activity, and is as easy as parking farther away from your office, taking the stairs instead of the elevator, or walking to lunch.
Adults should briskly walk 30 minutes a day, each day of the week. Research has shown that the benefits of walking and moderate physical activity for at least 30 minutes a day can help you:
- Improve circulation
- Lower the risk of heart disease
- Lower cholesterol
- Improve blood pressure and blood sugar levels
- Reduce the risk of non-insulin dependent (Type 2) diabetes
- Maintain body weight and lower the risk of obesity
- Enhance mental well-being
- Reduce the risk of osteoporosis
- Reduce the risk of breast and colon cancer
To keep track of your progress, it is also helpful to get a pedometer. Pedometers provide a source of biofeedback and track the number of steps that you take during a given time period. On average, 2,000 steps equals one mile. Therefore, if you take 10,000 steps during a week, you have walked the equivalent of five miles.
In addition to walking, resistance training also offers significant health enhancing benefits. Try combining the two exercises. Resistance training is akin to any weight-bearing exercise. Any exercise that involves carrying a load is resistance training. Running up a flight of stairs with a backpack or even picking up a box qualifies as resistance training. Resistance training is important for building and maintaining muscle mass. If you don’t use your muscles as you age, you will lose them. Muscles burn calories, so they are important for the metabolism. The benefits of resistance training include strong bones, increased strength, higher metabolism, improved glucose levels, lower cholesterol, and helping to avoid falls and injuries.