June 20, 2019 Blog 0

If you or someone that you know has decided that it is important to begin exercising regularly, then this is an excellent decision due to the improvements in health and fitness that can result. A simple walk can be extremely beneficial for you physically and mentally, and the list of reasons why it can be advantageous is enormous.

Of course, it is wise to talk with your doctor before you begin any type of exercise if you have significant health issues such as heart disease, kidney disease, arthritis, type 1 or type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure, or cancer. This is also true if you have not been active recently.

The Risks Of Prolonged Sitting

But if you are physically capable of maintaining a regular routine of walking without creating a health risk, then it is worthwhile to make the commitment to this simple but effective exercise as your normal daily activity.

According to multiple studies that reviewed the effects of sitting as opposed to remaining active, these studies revealed that people who sat for eight or more hours each day and did not engage in physical activity were at a level of risk for dying that was similar to those who smoked or were battling obesity.

Anyone who is spending a substantial percentage of their time sitting is failing to use energy, and this can be problematic for a number of reasons. This not only can lead to obesity, but it places anyone who sits excessively at increased risk of developing heart disease, along with dementia, deep vein thrombosis, stroke, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, varicose veins, osteoporosis, anxiety, and even cancer

It was also determined that people who were involved in 60-75 minutes of moderately intense physical activity were able to counteract the unwelcome factors that occurred due to excess sitting. Walking is considered to be a moderate-intensity activity, as opposed to more vigorous intensity activities such as running, swimming and hiking.

The Benefits Of Walking

A reasonable and worthwhile goal for this valuable activity is to walk for 30 minutes at least five days each week. However, if you have not been particularly active, then you might start with a 15-minute daily walk for the first week of you new regimen, then add five minutes for each of the next three weeks until you are completing 30 minutes walks with regularity.   

This can provide the level of physical activity that you need in order to reap the benefits of improved health. Of course, walking can be done without the expense of joining a gym, and it does not require any type of equipment. Instead, you can accomplish what can be an extremely important form of physical activity by having the desire to exercise and improve your health.

In addition to reducing the risk of experiencing the serious health conditions that were discussed earlier, the benefits of walking also include increasing the fitness of your heart and lungs, burning calories, reaching and retaining a healthy weight, reducing belly fat, decreasing joint pain, strengthening bones, improving your coordination and enhancing your mental outlook.

Your brain also benefits significantly from walking, the movement increases your energy level and unleashes helpful serotonin in your brain. This in turn, can clear your mind, and the additional focus can help you become more productive.  

The steps that you take also release chemicals that are called endorphins within your brain. The endorphins will then work together with the receptors in your brain toward reducing any anxiety that you may be encountering, and replacing it with a surge of energy and optimism.

The enhanced level of energy that you feel during and immediately after your walk through this combined boost of endorphin and serotonin can also stimulate your appetite and improve your sleep cycles.    

Where Should You Walk?

You can always take advantage of comfortable weather and make a full commitment toward taking an outdoor walk for the aforementioned time of 30 minutes each day. But if the current weather is not particularly inviting, that does not necessarily provide an excuse not to walk that day. Instead of allowing inclement weather to deter you from getting in your steps, you can locate an alternative option to accumulate your steps.

This includes walking in a nearby gym, or indoor track. However, you can also accomplish your walk by taking a trip through the grocery store – especially if you use outside aisles frequently during your shopping. You can also utilize a nearby mall, or walk with a co-worker through your work facility during the lunch hour. Or, you can walk inside your house or apartment providing that you have are comfortable using the amount of space that you have.

There can also be other creative ways to find venues during your day-to-day activities that will provide a place for you to accumulate your steps. This can be achieved by shifting your thinking so that your daily goal involves remaining diligent toward maintaining a healthy walking routine.

While walking is uncomplicated, the advantages are enormous. But you also have the option of intensifying your walking regimen by swinging your arms while slightly bending your elbows, keeping your back straight, and also making sure to keep you head upward.

At Orthopedic Associates, We Are Here To Help

At Orthopedic Associates, we want you to enjoy your daily activities. That includes involvement with your jobs, or any type of sports or recreational activity that you prefer. If you encounter discomfort, illness, injury, or have a concern about anything that might keep you from being involved in physical activity, we are here to assist you, so that you can return to a pain-free participation in the activities and lifestyle that you enjoy.  

That is why Orthopedic Associates offers a full spectrum of musculoskeletal care, along with in-house physical sports therapy, and state-of-the-art-technology including our digital imaging and open MRI, and an on-site surgical center for more patient convenience.

Our board-certified doctors have been practicing medicine for a combined total of 183 years of experience. This includes expertise in sports medicine, through which our physicians provide personalized care for a broad range of sports-related injuries – big or small.

In addition to the services that we provide that are related to Sports Medicine and In-House Imaging, our physicians are always available to utilize their knowledge to help you should you require joint replacement, or arthroscopic surgery, while our specialists are also here to assist with physical therapy, rehabilitation, and orthopedic trauma.

We encourage you to visit one of Orthopedic Associates two locations or request an appointment today to be on your way to feeling better.

Phil Clark
Phil’s experience as a writer enabled him to generate advertising and marketing material throughout his career in the television industry before he expanded his level of knowledge by creating various promotional elements for all forms of media in other industries. He has also produced articles that have been published in numerous publications and websites, including usatoday.com, and USA Today’s football magazine, where he wrote weekly columns and player profiles for multiple years. He has also worked with Photoshop, Illustrator, and Vizio, and has a BS in Broadcasting from Indiana State University.