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by Geoff Rand

With just a quick browse online or look at a few TV commercials, it is easy to see there are countless companies out there pushing pills claiming to cure this or lessen the effects of that, many for problems we may not even know we had.  The drug industry is one of the richest groups of corporations in our country.  That’s how they can afford all that advertising.

It’s always better to cure an ailment through a natural remedy, such as a diet or lifestyle change, than to take a drug.  Who wants to have to deal with those laundry lists of side effects from those drugs in the commercials?  You may not realize it, but you already have access to one of the best natural fixes for many health ailments, and it is free.  Just look down at your feet.

It may seem surprising, but regular walking is one of the best and easiest ways to improve and maintain your health.  One client of a personal trainer saw a decrease of 2% in body fat from doing nothing more than walking just under a mile a day.  Some benefits, like increased calorie burn may be obvious, but there are many more benefits to walking. 

Improved digestion and reduction in bloating is something to keep in mind with the holiday meals upon us.  Take a brisk walk immediately after your meal to reduce the negative effects from it.

Brisk walking can also improve insulin sensitivity, reduce blood pressure, and lower your risk from stroke.  Walking can also help aid muscle recovery from the increase in blood flow.  Walking also improves recovery from Delayed Onset Muscle Soreness (DOMS).  Studies also show that walking can decrease joint inflammation and strengthen bones.

Regular walks can also prevent the development of varicose veins, as well as boost your mood and help you be more focused and productive.  Walking can improve your sleep and give a boost to your immune system, which will help keep you from getting sick.

Former pro body builder, Stan Efferding talks about his walking regimen in this video.

Stan was able to lower his blood pressure and cholesterol and increase his insulin sensitivity, which resulted in a 50-pound loss in weight in just a few months.  His method is to walk after breakfast, after a daytime meal, and before bed.  He breaks his walking up into 10-minute walks, each done right after a meal and even does this after meals out.  He finds that these walks after eating at a restaurant keep him from overeating or wasting time on his phone, and aid in digestion.

Stan talks about studies that show that we are unable to undo a day of sitting with just one exercise period, say, after work.  Movement throughout the day is key to fighting the negative effects of sitting all day.  Regular walks will help accomplish this.

Your walks should be brisk.  Move at a pace that gets your blood pumping and makes it challenging to carry on a conversation due to your rate of breathing.  Breaking your walks up into 10-minute chunks for a total of 30-40 minutes a day helps keep you focused and makes the task seem less daunting.  Bring water with you and double up your healthy activities.  You may be surprised to see how easy it is to improve your health if you Walk This Way.

Sources:

http://www.wisebread.com/10-surprising-benefits-of-a-10-minute-walk

https://www.prevention.com/fitness/benefits-walking-every-day

 

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