WELLBEING: Improve your health by walking

May is a month of several awareness weeks including Mental Health Week (13th-19th), Cancer Prevention Week (13th-19th) and World Asthma Day (7th). It's also Walk to Work Week (13th-17th) and Walk to School Week (20th-24th). We thought we would focus on walking as it is a wonderful tool for tackling physical, emotional and mental health issues. Walking is a very valid form of exercise, burning calories, increasing bone density and boosting cardiovascular fitness. It's a wonderful de-stressor, giving you the chance to calm and sort through your thoughts. You can walk alone, with friends, family, in an organised group or just with your dog. Best of all, walking is a totally free form of exercise. What are you waiting for?

WHY WALK?

Walking is great exercise! So why not make May the month when you pledge to walk for at least 30 minutes, five days a week. At the National Walking Month website you can join in on achievable, fun daily walking challenges, log your miles, and join the online walking community to get encouragement and motivation from others.

HOW TO WALK

Any walking is better than none, but to really get the most from walking as a form of exercise, you need to walk five times a week at about 4 mph (that's about as fast as you'd walk if you were running late for an important appointment).

WALK OR DRIVE TO THE GYM?

A YouGov poll of 2,056 adults, commissioned by Living Streets, found almost 13% of gym goers who drove to the gym only needed to travel a mile or less to get there. If possible, why not leave the car at home and walk to the gym? Not only will walking save on fuel and potential parking costs, it will act as a good warm up before your session.

WALK IN MAY

Registration for National Walking Month is open now. Go to LivingStreets.org.uk to sign up and access free resources. Maybe you want to host your own walking event? Living Streets has posters, web banners, fundraising guide and even press releases for free use.

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