I'd been going back and forth between different exercises to highlight for today's post with almost all of them being high impact and/or high intensity movements. Since we've done a lot of those through individual exercises, group or 7-minute workouts, I thought to myself, why not keep it simple this week? It's a good idea to have variety in weekly workouts so why not have variety here on #MoveItMonday. That being said, we are going pretty basic this week and simply strolling on our own two feet. That's right, we're walking. No running intervals (although you go for it if that's your thing!), just walking.

It's no suprise that both FitBit and Apple watches have you strive to reach a certain number of steps or Move goal each day. Getting up and out of the chair/couch/bed/you-name-it is key for overall health and wellness. Finding just a few minutes a day to just walk is the perfect start towards living a healthier life. Plus, getting in a daily walk provides you with an excellent foundation to any exercise program. Not to mention, if you've got a FitBit, a nice walk puts you several steps closer to your daily 10,000. And, for my Apple friends, getting in a good walk gets us several percentage points closer to meeting our Move goal for the day.

Benefits of Walking

As found on an article on Healthline.com regarding the benefits of walking, author Jane Chertoff lists 10 different reasons for getting up and taking a walk.

  1. Burn calories.
  2. Strengthen the heart.
  3. Helps lower blood sugar.
  4. Eases joint pain.
  5. Boosts immune function.
  6. Boosts energy.
  7. Improves mood.
  8. Extends your life.
  9. Tones the legs.
  10. Helps with creative thinking.

I don't know how many times I've been in a not-so-great mood and after a short work feel 100 times better. Also, I've heard of a lot of people coming up with some of their best ideas while out for a walk. It's definitely happened to me a time or two. Obviously the physical benefits are also tremendous as well! I mean....I'm definitely on board to have more energy, less pain, a stronger heart, toned legs, better immunity, and a longer life span all from walking!! Where do I sign up?!

Well...that's another benefit right there! You don't need to sign up or join a gym because you can walk literally anywhere! Summer, spring, fall or winter, as long as it's not a million degrees too hot or too cold or stormy, you can walk outside anytime of year. The fall season is one of my favorite times to increase my outdoor walking; the temperatures are cooler plus it's prettier with the changing of the leaves.

Another benefit of walking is you don't need to do it all at once. What I mean by this is if you don't have 30 or 60 minutes to exercise or walk, you can split it up throughout the course of your day. Take a shorter morning walk and then during the day be more cognizant of where you can add more incremental walks in from there. Some examples include... Avoid the front row parking spot, park further away and walk to your destination. Walk up the stairs rather than taking the elevator. Take a conference call out on a walk instead of sitting at your desk. Go on a family walk after dinner (this also wears the kids out pre-bedtime which is a bonus right there!). There are all kinds of ways to get micro-movement via walking in over the course of a single day.

A couple of my favorite things to do while walking is to catch up on podcasts or on the flip side, listen to nothing at all except the sounds around me. Mindful movement through walking is a nice way to get your mind right through a sort of walking meditation. I'm always suprised when I do this of how many new things I discover or sounds I hear while out on my typical walking paths. It's a nice way to be present, connect with the world around, clear my head and get in some exercise all at the same time.

I think we all know how...

I'm going to go out on a limb and just skip the typical section of those posts where I tell you how to do the particular exercise. I trust you know how to put one foot in front of the other. In this case, it's just a matter of actually doing it!

Enter Your Challenge

Get up this week and walk. Simple enough, right?! Hit your 10,000 daily steps. Achieve your Move goal. Park in the last spot in the lot and walk all the way to your destination. However, you want to do it, just do it. Celebrate the fact that you have a body capable of movement and just walk. One foot after the other. Easy peasy.

I hope you've enjoyed this change of pace (literally!) for this week's #MoveItMonday! Until next week, happy walking!