If you were to tell the younger me that there are serious benefits of walking, I would’ve scoffed and told you to get a “real” workout in. Thankfully, those days are over.
After years of training and helping people reach their goals through behavior and lifestyle changes that last, I am the biggest fan of walking. Walking is versatile. It can aid in your fat loss journey and it can help you get more vitamin D. It can improve your productivity, mood, and overall quality of life.
I’m here to share with you some of the biggest benefits of walking has had on myself and the client’s I’ve trained.
Benefit of Walking #1: Fat Loss
Walking in and of itself doesn’t make you lose fat. In order to lose fat, you must be in a calorie deficit over a period of time. A calorie deficit is when you are burning more calories than you consume over a period of time.
Calorie burn happens a few different ways. We burn calories through movement and exercise, through digestion, and through our metabolic rate. So, if we need to be in a calorie deficit to lose body fat, we can do a few different things to make that happen. We can speed up our metabolism, move more, and/or eat less. This is why you’ve likely heard someone say that you need to workout more and eat less in order to lose body fat.
The problem with working out more and eating less is that it’s hard to maintain. And lasting results come from lifestyle changes that are maintained for years to come. So if you can’t continue to eat less and less and do more and more cardio, what do you do?
This is where steps come in. Getting 1,000 extra steps throughout the day is far easier to do on a consistent basis than doing an extra 30 minutes of formal cardio every day. Having my client’s slowly increase the amount of daily steps they take, whether it’s outside or on a treadmill, is one of the best tools we use to help them lose body fat and live healthier lives. And what they quickly realize is that adding some small walks in their day leads to other benefits outside of fat loss.
Benefit of Walking #2: Vitamin D
I remember when I went to my first year of college at North Dakota State. People had told me that there is very little sun for many months out of the year, so people take Vitamin D supplements and often deal with seasonal depression.
I didn’t think anything of it at first. But boy was it true. Coming from Colorado, a state where the sun is almost always shining, it was a bummer to live in constantly gloomy weather. I wouldn’t go to say I was depressed, but it certainly did have an impact on my mood.
Getting outside to go on a walk in the sunlight is one of the best things you can do to improve your mood and fight off feelings of gloom and depression.
Benefit of Walking #3: Productivity and Creativity
One of my favorite benefits of walking is what it can do for your productivity and creative thinking. I have personally found that getting outside for a walk drastically improves the amount of work that I get done as well as the quality of that work.
Turns out, there’s a study that backs that experience.
My clients have experienced the same thing, especially during COVID lockdowns. Being trapped in their house without much change of environment had a big impact on their creativity and productivity. Going outside for a walk helped them improve their performance in their careers.
Walking is one of the best things you can implement into your daily life to improve your quality of life and overall health. It can aid in your fat loss journey, help you improve your productivity, and potentially boost your mood for a better outlook on life. The benefits of walking are simply too good to pass up.
ABOUT THE AUTHOR
Adam is a fitness professional, baseball fan, and cookie fanatic based in Fort Collins, Colorado. After hanging up the cleats, he found a strong interest in the human body and how it performs. Since then, Adam has been transforming lives through fitness in a fun and encouraging atmosphere. As an ACE CPT and Fitness Nutrition Specialist, he is constantly moved to help people improve in all walks of life.