Is walking the right fit for me?
If you’re looking for a free, easy way to start being more active, walking could be the right choice for you. Walking is already a part of our everyday lives; it’s something most of us do without thinking. You don’t need to learn any new skills or buy any expensive equipment. You already walk everyday anyway; all you need to do is start doing a little more each day.
Walking let’s you enjoy all the benefits of a healthy aerobic exercise, without putting pressure on your joints or pushing yourself too hard. So if you don’t think you’d be up to jogging or running just yet, or ever, going for a walk is a great place to begin.
Is this suitable for me?
The great thing about walking is that almost anyone can do it. It doesn’t matter what age, size, shape or fitness level you are.
If you’re a beginner, walking’s perfect because it’s a low-intensity activity. This means that it’s a nice safe and gentle way to get started. And even if you’re slightly more advanced, doing a few extra steps won’t do any harm.
Walking can help you even if you’re pregnant or have a long-term condition like COPD or diabetes too. If you can walk, you can join in.
How will it benefit me?
Walking more often is a great way for you to start enjoying all the advantages of a more active lifestyle. This can:
- Give you more energy
- Boost your confidence
- Help you sleep
- Improve your mood
- Reduce stress
- Help you manage/lose weight
- Fight aging by strengthening bones/muscles and improving balance and coordination
- Lower the risk of Alzheimer’s
- Help manage long term conditions like diabetes and COPD
- Feel good about yourself
- Reduce the risk of serious illnesses, such as heart disease, type 2 diabetes and stroke
How much will it cost me?
Nothing. Nada. Zip. Zilch. Zero… Walking is completely free!
The only thing you need are some shoes or trainers that you’re comfortable in and don’t cause blisters.
If you want you can invest in a pedometer to keep track of your step count. This isn’t necessary but it can be fun to check how many steps you’re doing.
Can I do this near me?
Yes, you can walk anywhere you like. You could nip to the park, walk the dog or go for a stroll round the block. It’s completely up to you.
Liverpool has some of the most beautiful parks in the North West. This makes them the perfect place to enjoy a stroll by yourself or with a friend. Click here to find a park near you.
Here are two walks in our parks you can try out if you want a more structured journey.
If you’d like some help finding or creating a good walking route for yourself, you can always visit www.walkit.com and use their interactive route planner. It’s a great way to find a great walking route near you. You can also try walks that other local people have added and another little bonus is that each route includes your journey time, calorie burn and step count too!
You can check out some guided walking routes in our local parks. These can give structure to your walks and help you plan your walk in advance:
How do I start?
Starting to walk more can be easier than you think, especially if you make it fit into your daily routine. Our handy suggestions below can be just as good for you, so why not try:
- Walking part of the way to work
- Walking to the shop
- Walking the dog an extra 30 minutes a day
- Taking the stairs instead of the lift
- Leaving the car at home for short trips
So, that’s all you need to know about walking. If it seems like the right fit for you why not give it a go? Or if you think another activity might be more to your liking, take another look at our activities section.
I’ve heard about the 10k step challenge, what is this?
Once you’ve got started, a great way to stay motivated can be to challenge yourself to do 10,000 steps a day. This sounds like a lot at first but it’s something that you can work your way towards. You can use a pedometer to track your steps, or if you have a smartphone there are lots of free apps available for this.
The average person walks between 3,000 and 4,000 steps per day. If you walk 10,000 steps a day, you will probably do more than 150 minutes of activity a week, which is fantastic! No one expects you to do 10,000 on the first day, but it can give you an achievable target to work towards.