Facts show that physical inactivity now rivals smoking as one of the nation's biggest health problems. That makes it responsible for 17% of early deaths in the UK. Around the world, it accounts for 6% of deaths, making it one of the top four. It may come to a surprise to know that walking can help prevent this and so much more. It only takes 30 minutes of walking a day to improve your circulation, lower your cholesterol and blood pressure.
We all get caught up in the busyness of life, but going for a walk is simple and can make all the difference to your health. All you need is a proper fitting sports bra, supportive shoes and you're on your way! No gym fees, no class fees, just you, and maybe a friend, or fluffy companion.
If you think you don't have time to squish in 30 minutes of walking a day, then try fitting it in other ways. Instead of driving to run that errand, see if it's close enough to walk, take a walk during your lunch, outside or around the office, or try motivating the whole family to go out together.
The more inactive you are, the higher your chances are of developing cancer, heart disease or having a stroke by 5%. According to a study done by Ramblers and Macmillan Cancer support, if more people across the UK could be more active that could prevent 36,815 people from dying prematurely, 6,735 cases of breast cancer and 294,730 cases of diabetes.
Walking is a great way to stay active and it's a gentle activity, so you're less likely to get injured. In fact, some researchers claim walking is better for you than running! Scientists at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory in California found that brisk walking reduced the risk of heart disease by 9.3%, while running reduced it by 4.5%.
The sooner you start, the sooner you'll see the results. Sleep better, feel better and work towards improving your overall health. It just starts with stepping outside and putting one foot in front of the other.
If you don't feel comfortable walking alone, check out Britain on Foot, Ramblers, and Walking for Health and get involved in a walking group near you.
Ramblers and Macmillan Cancer support Research: https://www.walkingforhealth.org.uk/sites/default/files/Walking%20works_summary_AW_Web.pdf
Scientists at the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory: https://www.theguardian.com/lifeandstyle/2013/apr/05/brisk-walk-healthier-running-scientists