The best part about walking and hiking is that it can be done by people of all ages with minimum wear and tear and minimal equipment. Here are some of the benefits of walking and hiking.
Benefits of Walking and Hiking for Fitness and Well Being
Meeting New People
When you go out in a group excursion for a hike or a nature trail, it helps you to meet and interact with new people. Walking clubs organize group activities wherein you can walk with 2-3 people. This becomes a brand new opportunity for budding friendships.
You Do not Need Special and Difficult Machines and Equipment
The beauty about walking and hiking is that it goes easy on your budget without making you spend a fortune on a costly gym membership. All you need is a good pair of walking shoes and you are good to go.
Reduction in Cellulite
People who have been walking, running and hiking for years have zero cellulite on their legs and thighs. Their legs are strong and supple. They also do not find it difficult to adapt to a very different or a new exercise programme. Your legs also become shapelier and toned with regular walking and hiking.
Enhances Cardio-Vascular Efficiency
It is always better to go walking in the open countryside early in the morning. The air is fresh, there is no one around and you can also commune with nature. The entire activity boosts your heart health and makes your heart pump faster.
It is a Great Workout for Weight Loss
If you are planning to shed a lot of weight, moving to a very stringent workout programme may not be a very good start. Start gradually by walking and slowly increasing your pace and distance.
You will find yourself losing weight. Hill climbing in hiking is another way of toning the lower body and shedding copious amounts of fat. You can lose up to 3-4 kgs in a month by just a regular one-hour month provided you also control your diet.
Managing Stress and Depression
Nature walks and trails are a great way for breathing fresh air, enjoying the scenic view and managing stress and depression. You feel more calm and relaxed when walking in the countryside because the beauty of the hills and the water around you calms you and keeps your mentally distracted. More and more people are now opting for vacations in the hills from the stressful and bustling city life.
Lower Cholesterol Levels
People who regularly participate in nature trails, hikes and walks have shown improved heart health and lower cholesterol readings. That is why patients with heart disease are advised to start walking to keep their cholesterol readings under strict control.
Reduces the Risk for Diabetes and Osteoporosis
One of the most profound effects of walking has been in the area of diabetes and osteoporosis. People with a family history of diabetes reduce their risk of developing the disease by half if they walk for at least 3-4 times a week. It is also said to be a very good exercise for the bone health in women.
Women who walk daily are shown to be at a reduced risk for osteoporosis and arthritis as walking and hiking keeps the bones and joints supple and strong. This happens because walking increases bone mass and bone density thus making them less brittle with age.
Spices Up your Sex Life
People who took a brisk walk daily felt it’s after effects in the form of endorphins or the ‘feel good’ hormones. This makes you feel good, alert, active and energized.
You will also find a notable difference in the quality of your sex life. Regular walking will strengthen the pelvic floor muscles, enhance blood flow to the pelvic organs and make you achieve more satisfying orgasms research suggests. Thus, it is a good exercise to take up for an improved sex life.
Walking is Great for Pregnant Women
It is the number 1 exercise for pregnant women who wish to stay fit throughout their pregnancy. This is because walking is the least strenuous on the limbs and joints and does not cause any harm to the baby.
It also keeps your weight in check, enhances blood circulation and makes it easy for you to have a normal and healthy delivery.
Good for Babies
Ask any new mother and she will tell you that she revels in her daily walk with the baby in the pram. Newborn babies who are taken for a walk in their prams are said to be less restless and are sharper as they absorb the surroundings around them. This allows the baby to also meet new people and see new faces, which enhances its social skills.
Helps Metabolize Calcium
A daily walk everyday helps your body to metabolize vitamin D in the body, which in turn helps to absorb calcium and makes your bones and joints stronger. A few minutes walking in the sun are very good for the body as it raises your levels of vitamin D.
Boosts the Immune System
A long-term effect and benefit of walking is its impact on the immune system. Regular walking and hiking enhances your immunity and keeps you disease free. You will find yourself suffering from fewer colds, coughs and other illnesses if you regularly go for walks.
Lowers Blood Pressure
Walking is the best cure for reducing significantly high blood pressure. It melts arterial plaque and reduces the pressure on the heart walls thus significantly lowering your blood pressure. Any blood pressure patient is first advised to bring his/her readings down with the help of walking.
These are some of the health benefits of walking and hiking on the body, mind and your general fitness levels. Keep in mind that you need to invest in the right walking shoes to make your journey of walking pleasant and comfortable. This will also prevent muscle pulls and other leg injuries.
Caution: Please use Home Remedies after Proper Research and Guidance. You accept that you are following any advice at your own risk and will properly research or consult healthcare professional.