WIN: Walking for Wellbeing

For the latest WIN blog, Jake looks at the wellbeing benefits of walking and shares some tips on how you can fit a quick stroll into your daily routine.

For 90 years, the walking charity Living Streets has been keeping people on their toes, getting them out of the car and onto their feet. This month, they’ll celebrate their 90th anniversary with the annual Walk to School week from the 20-24 May. It’s not just kids that can benefit from this though, walking can be a huge mood booster for everyone.

We all know it can be hard to fit in exercise around our busy daily lives. I doubt many people’s lunch break allows enough time for a quick swim or cycle! But a half an hour of brisk walking is a really simple and wellbeing boosting way of squeezing some exercise into your packed schedule. Why not take on the kids’ challenge and walk to work every day this week? This isn’t possible for everyone, but there are still loads of other opportunities to get in a good few steps.

It might not sound appealing, but getting up an hour earlier to take a morning stroll can be great for your wellbeing. Recent studies have shown that people who go to bed and wake up earlier are much less like likely to develop depression, and with the added fresh air from a morning walk, you’ll be feeling energised and focused for your day ahead. So fitting in a morning walk won’t just give you time to do your recommended thirty minutes of daily exercise, it will improve your mental health and mood each day you do it.

It doesn’t have to be boring either! Use your walking time to unwind and distract yourself if you have a busy day ahead of you. You could even do some breathing exercises on your way — count your breathing, in and out, with every other step. This is the perfect time to de-stress while en route to your next meeting or getting back from dropping off the kids. And what better time to put on your headphones and strut down the pavement to some upbeat stompers? That’ll send you charging ahead confident and ready to go.

Walking for wellbeing is one of the best way to exercise, unwind and feel better. So why not join in with the kids this Walk to School week?

Read more of our Wellbeing Innovation Network blogs here.