Is Walking the Perfect Exercise?

Via healthnews.com –Kristen DeLeo

I’m a firm believer in taking family walks. Just as there are claims as to what is nature’s perfect food, the act of walking is arguably the body’s perfect exercise. No extra equipment is needed, only good shoes and an open road.

 

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It’s an easy, inexpensive activity anyone can do. Walking strengthens your bones, works your heart, and clears your mind. When you bring the kids along, you can add family bonding and role modeling to its list of benefits.

I have fond memories of walking with my family as a kid. My dad and I would play “kick the can.” My sister and I would avoid stepping on cracks, “saving our mother’s back,” as the saying goes. I remember feeling pride as our whole clan, including the dog, walked the neighborhood, like we were marching in our own parade.

 

Integrating family walks into your lifestyle can be as simple as walking around the block after dinner a few nights a week. Even a leisurely stroll after dinner is beneficial to family health. It’s better than plopping down in front of the television, while digesting what is often too much food.
 

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But to get the full benefits of a walking program, you must stride at a moderate intensity for at least twenty minutes. For families who are ready to pick up the pace, here are a few tips to enhance the experience for the whole family:

 Play “I Spy.” Predetermine a list of objects to look out for while walking, such as a red mailbox, a palm tree, or an out-of-state license plate. Give the list to each member of the family. See who can “spy” the most things on the list. Read full article…

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