If you want to get fit, and keep your heart healthy, one of the easiest and most effective forms of moderate exercise you can do is walking.
Walking briskly for 20-30 minutes every day, or most days of the week, is highly recommended by health experts as it gets your heart rate up and burns fat. ‘Brisk’ means you can talk but not sing and you may be slightly out of breath.
Walking is simple and free and can easily be incorporated into your daily routine. If you sit a lot at work try to break up the time when you are sedentary by walking up or down stairs, or taking a quick stroll around the block during your lunch or tea breaks.
If you download a free walking app it might help you to reach exercise targets including the recommended 5,000 steps a day.
You can build walking into your daily routine by doing some of the following:
- Take the stairs instead of the elevator.
- Get off public transport one stop earlier and walk to work or home.
- Walk, rather than drive, to the local shops.
- Walk the dog or even your neighbour’s dog.
- Some of the benefits of walking briskly include:
- increased cardiovascular and heart and lung fitness.
- reduced risk of heart disease and stroke.
- improved management of conditions such as high blood pressure, high cholesterol, joint and muscular pain or stiffness, and diabetes.
- stronger bones and improved balance.
- increased muscle strength and endurance.
- reduced body fat.