(WHTM) — If you’re not a fan of intense workouts, there are other ways to stay in shape and stay healthy, such as going for a walk.
In fact, a study shows that simply walking at a quicker pace for just 20 minutes a day can help reduce the risk of things such as heart disease.
“Walking or really any aerobic activity helps make the heart a bit more efficient. So therefore, as you’re improving fitness or improving your ability to tolerate a specific load, your heart actually becomes more effective with each contractility or each heart pump that it provides for that type of exercise,” Dr. Tamanna Singh of Cleveland Clinic said.
Dr. Singh said walking is often the easiest exercise – not to mention it can be done anywhere, so he recommends it to most of her patients.
All you really need is a good pair of shoes. As far as time and distance go, Singh says it depends on the person’s goals. They don’t necessarily have to walk at a faster pace for 30 minutes a day in the beginning- they can work up to that level if needed.
Then focus on remaining consistent. That is what is going to help lead to life-long results and improve cardiovascular risk. She said another tip to consider is having an incentive to stay active.
“Walking with a buddy sometimes helps build socialization and accountability, so often times I’ll recommend that. Using a pet, so if you have a dog, make sure you’re the one who’s going to walk your dog every day. Or if you have particular songs or podcasts that you really enjoy listening to, maybe save the ones you really enjoy or your favorites for those walks to again provide incentives and ultimately build consistency,” Dr. singh.
Singh also said you shouldn’t feel bad if you miss a day of walking or don’t do as much as you wanted. What matters is being intentional about it and trying to make it a habit.