This week is going lightning fast in my part of California! I hope you're having a fabulous week so far!
At the top, I posted a photo of me laughing. I laugh a lot!! My kids tell me I laugh too much...lol!
I want to start by sharing with you a conversation that took place with my daughter when she was 4 years old. I hope it makes YOU laugh :D
We used to live in the valley where the summers are hot. One particular hot day, my daughter and I were outside playing with a ball. Two beautiful Asian women were walking together and glided past our house. Both of them had a big, black umbrella over their head. The conversation went like this:
Me: Catch the ball Sydney.
Me: Catch the ball Sydney.
Sydney: Okay mom!
Me: Stop staring at the women walking and catch the ball!
Me: Sydney, stop staring, it's not polite!
Sydney: Mom, it's hot outside but I think those women think it's raining!!
I still laugh when I tell friends about this conversation...lol!
Those beautiful women were smart for 2 reasons!!
1. They kept their face from being exposed in the sun.
2. They were WALKING, which is our topic today :)
Walking is a gentle, low-impact form of exercise that's suitable for most people of all ages!
The following are 10 health benefits I found online:
1. WALKING strengthens our heart. Regular walking has been shown to reduce our risk of heart disease and stroke. It lowers levels of bad cholesterol while increasing levels of good cholesterol and keeps blood pressure in check.
2. WALKING lowers disease risk. As well as heart disease, walking can slash our risk of developing type 2 diabetes, asthma, and some cancers.
3. WALKING keeps weight in check. Putting 1 foot in front of the other is 1 of the easiest ways to do that. A person weighing 60kg burns 75 calories simply by strolling at 2mph for 30 minutes. Increase that to 3mph and we'll burn 99 calories. Speed it up to a fast walk at 4mph and that's 150 calories. The equivalent of a jam doughnut!
4. WALKING can help prevent dementia. Dementia affects 1 in 14 people over 65 and 1 in 6 over 80. We know being active has a protective effect on brain function and regular exercise reduces dementia risk by up to 40%
5. WALKING can help prevent osteoporosis. Walking counts as a weight-bearing activity. It stimulates and strengthens bones, increasing their density. Really important, especially for women :D
6. WALKING tones our legs, butt, and tummy. A good walk can help strengthen and shape our legs, giving great definition to calves, quads, hamstrings, and lifting our glutes (butt muscles). Especially if we add hills! If we really pay attention to our posture as we walk it can tone our abs and whittle our waist.
7. WALKING helps our arms. Our speed when walking comes from our arms. Hold them at a comfortable level, bent at the elbow, and swing them backwards and forwards as we walk. Swing them faster and we'll automatically speed up. The movement tones our arms, shoulders, and upper back.
8. WALKING boosts our vitamin D levels. If we're walking outside in daylight, we'll be boosting our body's stores of vitamin D. Vitamin D is a nutrient that's hard to get from food, but that we can synthesise from exposure to sunlight.
9. WALKING gives us energy. A brisk walk is one of the best natural energizers around. It boosts circulation and increases oxygen supply to each and every cell in our body, helping us to feel more alert and alive!
10. WALKING makes us happy. The ability of exercise to boost mood is undisputed. Studies have shown regular, moderate-intensity exercise (brisk walking) to be as effective as antidepressants in some cases of mild to moderate depression. Getting active releases feel-good endorphins into the bloodstream, reducing stress and anxiety.
Are you feeling motivated to take a walk?! I am...lol! Some of you may even want go running or hit the gym! Go for it! Grab a partner or some great music and do it!!
On Friday, I'll be posting a recipe (pictures included) so be sure to check in!
See you on Friday!!
Pamela Stewart, NASM Certified Personal Trainer and Weight Loss Specialist