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Motivate Me Move It

5 Health Benefits of Walking a Mile a Day

katiehinman January 13, 2020
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Before we begin our Shapa Marathon Challenge, let’s get a little extra motivation from our top 5 health benefits of walking a mile a day! Beginning with some basic Q&A:

How long is a mile? 
A mile is 1.61 kilometers or 5280 feet.

How long does it take? 
Walking a mile at a moderate pace takes about 15 to 20 minutes. (1) 

How long do I need to walk to get the benefits?
The 2008 U.S. Department of Health and Human Services (HHS) federal physical activity guidelines recommend that adults spend at least 150 minutes per week of moderate physical activity. Or 75 minutes per week of vigorous physical activity, including strength training, 2 or more days per week. (3) In walking terms, that would be about 21 minutes a day. 

Will it help me lose weight? 
Well….that depends. You can not outwork a bad diet, poor sleep, and high stress. But walking every day does more than just boost your exercise minutes. Walking leads to many benefits that can be influential in weight loss and lifestyle change. 

Here are just a few benefits of walking every day. 

It requires little effort.
You know those lists of excuses you have for why you didn’t go to the gym, yoga class, or a run? Those don’t really work with walking. You don’t have time? Walk during your lunch break. Forgot your gym clothes? Whelp, walk in your work clothes. Too cold outside? It looks like it’s time for a walk around the nearest indoor mall! 

Mood Booster
Walking (especially outside) can change your overall mood and reduce stress. Taking breaks during your busy or stressful day to get some fresh air and sunlight can help you feel happier, more optimistic, and go back to whatever you were working on with clarity. 

Cardio for the heart-io!
Walking has amazing benefits for our hearts. Studies show that walking can reduce cardiovascular issues by 31% and reduce the risk of dying by 32%!(2)

Commitment to health
Intentionally walking every day is more than just a calorie burner. It creates a habit of thinking about your health and proves to yourself that you see the value exercise plays in your current and future health. 

Prevention
Think of it this way – every step you take is literally a step towards a healthier you. Studies show that walking every day can help prevent diseases such as dementia, diabetes, obesity, depression, and more. (2)

Feeling inspired? Get started with our Shapa Marathon Challenge where you walk one mile every day for 26 days! 

References:

1.Yang Y, Diez-roux AV. Walking distance by trip purpose and population subgroups. Am J Prev Med. 2012;43(1):11-9. doi:10.1016/j.amepre.2012.03.015: https://linkinghub.elsevier.com/retrieve/pii/S0749379712002401

2.“Walking: Your Steps to Health.” Harvard Health, Harvard Health Publishing, 18 July 2018, www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/walking-your-steps-to-health.

3. U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. 2008 Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans. Available from: https://health.gov/PAGuidelines/ 

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