The benefits of walking outdoors could change your entire life. Walking for exercise, especially outdoors, impacts your mood, creativity, and mental clarity like nothing else. That means walking can be one of the best ways to get past most anything going on in life. It can open new ways of thinking and coping as it does wonders for your health and fitness levels.
Here are ten ways walking can benefit your life:
1. Walking helps you think.
It’s been said that “All truly great thoughts are conceived while walking.” I don’t know if that’s true, but science backs it up. Studies always show that exercising releases chemicals in your brain that helps you think more clearly.
I have gotten some of my best ideas while walking. When I’m stuck, have a problem, angry, or sad; going for a walk can reveal insights and solutions that weren’t there when I sat at home focused on the problem.
2. Walking enhances creativity.
Besides thinking clearer, walking has a way of elevating your thoughts. You find that exercising in the fresh air gets you to thinking out of the box. You will start seeing the world and people around you from different perspectives.
3. Walking gives you confidence.
Shuffle around your house for a few minutes then step outside and stride down the street. Notice the shift in how you feel about yourself? Taking a walk outside, for some reason, boosts confidence. Maybe it’s being “out there” that gives your esteem a lift. My confidence level increased tenfold after I started walking outside regularly, and I’ve talked to others who have had the same experience.
4. Walking grounds you in the now.
Walking puts you in touch with your body allows you to notice the surroundings at the same time. It allows you to enter the present moment and become acutely aware of all your senses. You’ll find it much easier to disconnect from thoughts of the past and the future, and merely do what you are doing.
5. Walking helps you get to know yourself.
Even if you share your outdoor walks with a person, or an animal, there’s something about walking that plugs you into YOU. It gives you greater access to what some call inner guidance and the non physical aspect of yourself. The part that knows what is right and knows how to point you in the right direction.
6. Walking reminds you of your connection to The all.
It’s easy to miss that everything is connected when we’re wrapped up in the ins and outs of daily life. Take a walk outside and you will be reminded of the vastness of it all. Becoming conscious that you are part it all can help you reconnect to energy of the larger.
7. Walking outside lifts your mood.
Most of these days are familiar with at least the word, endorphins. Walking for exercise helps create and activate them. The release of endorphins while exercising or working out can’t help but lift your mood. Regular walking relieves depression as well as elevating fitness levels.
8. Walking opens possibilities.
You can’t help but open your eyes to see the world around you when you walk or run. You will see colors, shapes, people, and things happening around you, that you never noticed before. Opening your eyes to the world around you opens your life to new possibilities that you’ve missed.
9. Walking gets your energy moving.
If you’re moving, your energy is flowing. Your energy is flowing even if you’re not moving, but you’re more aware of it when you’re moving. Feeling the blood flowing in your veins and your heart thumping can amp up your sense of being endless energy. Combining this movement with the sensation of a breeze or the sun or rain or other aspects of nature revs up the flow of energy in your body.
10. Walking improves your health.
As I said at the start of this post, walking has many health benefits. Anything that benefits health benefits your fitness levels and overall life. The healthier you are, the more able you are to handle the ups and downs (especially the downs) in life. It gives you the strength you need to think and act as needed to move toward your goals.
If you don’t take regular walks outside, think about making time for them. Even if you have to give up some sleep to make time for a morning walk, it’s worth it. And the energy you gain makes up for the sleep you lose.