I did the 10k steps a day in May Challenge for charity. It was a fabulous opportunity to get out and about, get a little fitter and raise some money for charity.
Walking is such a great form of exercise, so here are 5 reasons why you should embrace this healthy habit…
1. You get some fresh air
One thing we did a lot of when we did this challenge was go walking in our local woods. It was so nice to get some fresh air, listen to the birds sing and have some quality time with my son.
It’s Ireland, so sunshine isn’t guaranteed, and when the sun does come out, so do we! Whenever we can top up our vitamin D levels, we take them!
2. It helps you maintain your weight
Walking 10k steps a day in May was the equivalent of walking across Ireland!
Well, those 10k steps a day turned into around 8km a day, so when we multiplied it by 31, it was over 250km over the period of a month.
Imagine how many calories you would burn walking that much over the month..
By taking a little action ever day, the result accumulated over the month, and I was delighted with the result.
3. It can help with your balance and co-ordination
Walking in the woods means walking over uneven terrain, so it forces you to focus on your balance and co-ordination. Doing this for a whole month meant that I became much more confident walking off the beaten track, and wasn’t so nervous on uneven ground.
As we get older, and if I’m honest being over-weight doesn’t help, I’m more nervous walking on grass. I see myself slipping or falling and it’s not a nice picture, so that confidence boost made a huge difference.
4. It helps strengthen your bones and muscles
Walking maybe a low impact form of exercise, but it still helps to strengthen and tone your muscles, especially your legs and bum.
I have to be honest, it wasn’t easy starting out, and whilst I didn’t have the aches and pains that goes with going to the gym, my heels got sore, so some days it felt like I was walking on bruised feet. However, like everything, it got better with time.
5. It helps to fight depression
I must have skipped the gene that gives others an endorphin high with exercise, because I never got that, but for me walking is almost like meditation, in that it reduces my stress levels, and leaves me more relaxed and happier.
So, next time you’re feeling a little stressed, maybe go take a walk and see what happens. Don’t forget to keep safe. We’re lucky with our local woods, but some places I’ve lived, a woman wouldn’t dream of going for a walk on her own. It’s just a reflection of our times unfortunately.