According to Dustin Mark McNeer, you can increase your life expectancy by walking as little as ten minutes per day.
Most people hate running, but that doesn’t mean you should give up on cardio altogether. Personal trainer and certified nutritionist, Dustin Mark McNeer, explains that walking is one of the easiest and most beneficial exercises for athletes and beginners alike. Recent studies show that adults who walked at a moderate to vigorous pace for 55 minutes per week were more likely to live without disabilities compared to adults that remained sedentary.
Although all adults are recommended to exercise 150 minutes per week, Dustin Mark McNeer notes that even a little is better than none at all. Brisk walking helps people control their weight and maintain muscle strength, which in turn keeps joints healthy and functioning. Walking was even shown to have beneficial effects for people who have osteoarthritis.
To begin, Dustin Mark McNeer recommends creating a walking plan. Start with walking briskly for ten minutes each day, taking different routes around your neighborhood or local park. Once you can comfortably walk for ten minutes, increase your sessions by five to ten minutes. If you are struggling to raise your time, but want to maximize health benefits, consider taking your ten-minute walk two times each day, once in the morning and once in the evening. Dustin Mark McNeer always advises his clients to listen to their bodies when deciding how long to engage in walking sessions.
Think of your walking plan as a long-term goal. Dustin Mark McNeer explains that exercising in short increments over a long period is more beneficial to your health than exercising in long increments for a short period of time. Slow movements can eventually build up into longer movements as you gain more flexibility and strength. Stay consistent and keep a journal of times and distances, so you know how much progress is being made. It can be challenging to recognize achievement without documentation.
Walking is considered to be a low-impact exercise and is much easier on the body than running. A brisk walk is accessible to anyone, anywhere. It can even improve your mood and mental health. Many people find enjoyment in walking while listening to positive and uplifting music, or even an audiobook. Auditory stimulation will make your walk go by faster and will leave you feeling refreshed at its completion.
Another great source of motivation is a walking buddy or walking group. A walking partner can help you stay accountable and reach your goals while offering support and companionship. If you don’t have any friends or acquaintances that are interested in joining you, take notice of other neighbors who are outside when you are. Even if they are walking their dog or grabbing the mail, you could take the opportunity to see if they would be interested in walking with you. Dustin Mark McNeer notes that there are even online groups and forums for people looking for support or a walking partner.
Everyone is different, so it’s essential to find a schedule and method that works best for you. The overall benefits of walking far outweigh the challenge of pushing yourself to get started or to find a partner. Dustin Mark McNeer recommends finding a personal trainer for extra motivation and personalized fitness plans.