Ten Ways To Walk More
We all know that walking isn't just great at the weekend through the countryside but also something we should be doing more of all the time - it keeps us healthy in body, mind and soul.
So here's a few ways the team here at Walks Around Britain have introduced more walking into our week...
1. Take Your Lunch
On average, us Brits only take 22 minutes a day of our lunch hour we're entitled to.
Strike a blow for the workers - take the whole one hour and find a place to eat that's a 30 minute round trip walking from your office - 30 minutes eating and 30 minutes walking - excellent.
2. Walk to Work - at least once a week
If you're within walking distance from your work, how about doing just that - at least once a week.
You'll soon see the benefit to your health.
To find out more about walking to work, visit the Living Streets website.
3. Park / Get off the bus a little bit further away
If you need to drive to work, how about parking 10 minutes away from your office - that way you've got another 20 minutes of walking exercise every day. And if you pay for your parking, the chances are car parking further away from your office might well be cheaper than where you are parking now. If you are travelling on the bus or by tram, a few stops further away could be a cheaper fare stage too.
4. Use the Stairs
Seems an easy suggestion, but if you avoid the lift and use the stairs for a long period, you can greatly increase your lung capacity, blood pressure and cholesterol measurements.
5. Listen to your Reading
If you're a bit of a bookworm, why not combine your love of books with your walking? Lots of books are now released as audio books too - which you could loan from the library or from websites like Audible - which you can listen to on your walks. If you're happy about to listening to a computer-style voice, certain versions of the Kindle e-book reader from Amazon will read aloud most e-books, albeit sometimes with some distinctly odd pronouncation in some instances.
You can always listen to our monthly walking and outdoor podcast whilst out walking - download them from iTunes here. :)
6. Take work meetings outside
It's all the rage in the big world of corporate America, so if you're able to decide where meetings are held, why not arrange one in a local park? Conversations are often better held in person than over the phone or via email, so schedule a meeting whilst walking and get loads organised! The Americans have a name for it - netwalking.
7. Pack up your baby
If you're a new parent, leave the buggy or push-chair behind and take your little one out in a baby carrier harness. This gives you both unbelievable closeness to your child as well as the ability to go for walks which aren't accessible to buggies.
It's a great way to get your child feeling the wonder of the fresh air whilst at the same time.
8. Get a Dog
According to a Canadian study, urban dog owners are more likely to walk almost double on average the amount non-dog owners did. There's also many other health benefits now recognised in dog ownership, including the lowering of blood pressure, an increase in mood and others.
But obviously, a dog is for life and should be well considered before taking a puppy on.
9. Park once – and only once
Whilst you are out running errands, try parking the car in a central location and then walk to all of the stores instead of driving. And if your bags get too heavy, return to your car and drop them off to get in the extra steps. As an added bonus, you'll also save on fuel too.
10. Invest in a device to find how much you walk
Wearable devices that track your movement as very common now - and it's amazing the effect having one has. Suddenly, even the most sedentry people become interested in how much they are moving... so if you are determined to walk more, then an activity tracker could be a great buy - and they don't have to be too expensive. The marketleader is of course Fitbit, with their cheapest model being the Alta at around £60...
But there are many other "Fitbit clones" available now which do the job just as well - such as the LETSCOM Fitness Tracker, which records steps, distance, calories burned, and active minutes; tracks your sleep; has a built-in USB plug; shows notifications of calls and messages and has an app for your phone - and is only £16.99.
What do you do to walk more during everyday life? Let us know...