Burns fat, Builds stamina, Boosts immunity, Improves energy & Makes us happy..

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Sometimes walking is overlooked as a great form of exercise, however it can be done anywhere and is a very effective in burning fat, building stamina, boosting immunity, improving energy levels, flooding our body with “happy” endorphins and reducing the risk of many chronic diseases. Walking is classed as a moderate-intensity activity and scientific research has concluded that we should be doing a minimum of 150 minutes of weekly exercise to maintain health. If you walk 10,000 steps a day, you will probably do more than 150 minutes which is fantastic, as research suggests that the more activity you do the better for your overall health.

So what can regular physical activity can do for you? Quite a lot actually!

It's has been medically proven that people who do regular physical activity have:

  • up to a 35% lower risk of coronary heart disease and stroke
  • up to a 50% lower risk of type 2 diabetes
  • up to a 50% lower risk of colon cancer
  • up to a 20% lower risk of breast cancer
  • a 30% lower risk of early death
  • up to an 83% lower risk of osteoarthritis
  • up to a 68% lower risk of hip fracture
  • a 30% lower risk of falls (among older adults)
  • up to a 30% lower risk of depression
  • up to a 30% lower risk of dementia

 

Given the overwhelming evidence, it seems obvious that we should move more and fit activity into our busy lives .

Walking is something most of can do, it is easy to fit into your busy day and the perfect way to start your journey to a fitter, healthier you!

If you're achieving at least 150 minutes of physical activity from walking, then your are meeting official health advice, however if you want to add some variety to your activity, why not add some strength and conditioning exercises at home to your weekly routine. Have a look at some of the 10-minute bodyweight workouts I have on my website www.alvaosullivan.com and incorporate these to your fitness routine 3 times a week and you will see some great changes to the strength & shape of your body too.

Being active everyday takes effort to start and like everything it takes a while for new positive behaviour to become a healthy habit, however if you keep at it, it will become easier, more enjoyable and second nature!

Here are some great ways to build up your daily 10,000 steps.

  • get off the bus early and walk the rest of the way home or to work
  • walk to the station instead of taking the car or bus
  • take the stairs instead of the lift, or walk up escalators
  • shop locally if you can and walk
  • walk the children to school, whatever the weather
  • get fit with your dog
  • get out and have a walk in between dropping and collecting children at extra curricular activities
  • get up from the desk at lunchtime and take a 20-minute interval walk
  • fit 20-minutes interval walking in after dinner

I’m recently back from a weekend in London with my children and was amazed how not having a car and using public transport to get around, I walked so much more. We covered 23,000 steps (19 kilometers) very easily in one day! It is amazing how you can increase activity, fitness and health by walking that little bit more everyday.

You just need to equip yourself with a pedometer, a health app on your phone or an activity tracker device and you are ready to take the 10,000 step challenge?

I’ve just put up a few links to show you what this devices look like. (I'm not necessarily recommending these suppliers as you may get them cheaper elsewhere)

http://www.apple.com/ios/health/

http://www.harveynorman.ie/connected-health/activity-trackers-en

http://www.inhealth.ie/fitness-exercise/pedometers.html?limit=all

Will you take the challenge?