Although walking is easiest when the weather is agreeable, don’t let a little rain or light snow keep you indoors!
Here are some tips to get the most out of it:
In mild weather, wear several light layers so that you can remove a layer as your body warms up from the activity. If it’s a chilly day, bring gloves and a hat. You want to be comfortable and enjoy your walk.
Wear supportive shoes.
Thin-soled, untied or loose-fitting shoes may result in a twisted ankle or sore arches – not the benefit you are looking for! Wear comfortable footwear that is appropriate for the weather – your walk will not be enjoyable with cold or wet feet.
Bring a bottle of water.
It’s surprising how quickly you may become thirsty, even on a short walk. This is especially important on hot, humid days when remaining hydrated is a challenge.
Get your arms moving while you walk.
Swing them gently front to back. As an added bonus, it will limber up your shoulder joints and muscles.
Walk at a comfortable, brisk pace.
The quicker the walk, the greater the benefits.
A companion is a good idea.
Ask your partner, a friend or one of your children to come along with you. They can keep you motivated and make walking seem like less of a chore.
Making walking a regular habit.
Getting into the activity habit is easiest if you choose a specific time each day. If you are a morning person, that might be before you start work or the kids need your help getting ready for school.
Not a morning person? A walk on your lunch break will work up an appetite and help your digestion.
Alternatively, if evening is the best time for you, schedule your walk after dinner and evening chores are completed. The important thing is to decide on the best time for you and try not to allow other things to get in the way.
Consider your walk as an enjoyable break in your day, a time when there are no chores to do or deadlines to meet. Breathe deeply and enjoy your surroundings.
For more information about the benefits of walking, read Walk Your Way to Better Health.