Walking is a free and fun physical activity that is accessible to people from all walks of life. You do not need any special equipment or a specific time of the day to avail its benefits.
Whether you like the solitude to sort out your thoughts, enjoy company while walking so you could chat to someone, or it is your special time to listen to that trending podcast, walking can mean different things to different people. What stays constant is that it is great for your body and mind.
Starting your day with a walk is even more beneficial for your health. Read on to know how.
Health Benefits of a Morning Walk
1. Boosts your energy: A brisk walk to start your day can leave you feeling refreshed and rejuvenated. It will maintain your energy levels throughout the day and help reduce fatigue.
Breathing in some cool, fresh, and clean air in the morning clears your mind and makes you feel alert and alive.
2. Improves your mood: Starting your day with a walk equals starting your day in a good mood. Physical activity helps your body release endorphins and serotonin, which are natural mood and self-esteem enhancers.
Walking has also been proven to help manage stress, anxiety, and depression.
3. Helps boost mental clarity: Walking increases blood supply to your brain and has been proven to improve your cognitive abilities. A morning walk may help increase your mental clarity, ability to focus, and capacity for creative thinking.
It has a positive effect on your memory, concentration, and problem-solving skills. Walking has also been found to reduce the risk of Alzheimer’s disease and the effects of memory loss over time.
4. Improves heart health: Consistent walking improves blood circulation and lowers your blood pressure, thus reducing your risk of heart disease.
Regular walking can help maintain healthy cholesterol levels and reduce your risk of heart attacks and strokes.
5. Manages your blood sugar levels: Walking may also help reduce your blood sugar levels by increasing your body’s ability to respond to insulin.
It lowers your risk of developing diabetes and if you already live with diabetes, it helps with managing the condition better.
6. Strengthens your muscles: Being regular with your morning walks can help strengthen your leg and abdominal muscles, giving you a wider range of motion and improving overall health.
Walking can also help reduce joint and muscle pain by lubricating and strengthening the muscles around your joints.
7. Helps you sleep better at night: A morning walk and exposing yourself to the early morning sun can help keep your natural circadian rhythm (sleep and wake cycle) working well, which improves the quality of your sleep.
Studies also suggest that physical activity can enhance the effects of natural sleep hormones which can help you fall asleep easier.
8. Assists in maintaining a healthy weight: This point may be why you read through the entire article - to know if walking helps with weight loss. And it may.
Walking at a moderate pace for about 30 minutes can burn 150 to 200 calories. If you combine walking with a healthy diet and strength training, it can help prevent weight gain and may also help with weight loss.
In these pandemic times, if you cannot go out for a walk, there are various videos and apps available using which you can do walking exercises at home.
Also remember to stay hydrated, eat healthily, sleep well, and take steps to care for your mental health.
Disclaimer: This article is written by the Practitioner for informational and educational purposes only. The content presented on this page should not be considered as a substitute for medical expertise. Please "DO NOT SELF-MEDICATE" and seek professional help regarding any health conditions or concerns. Practo will not be responsible for any act or omission arising from the interpretation of the content present on this page.