Want to get ahead in life by taking a few simple steps? If you think that fibromyalgia or chronic illness makes a fitness or body movement program impossible, then take it easy. Start slowly. Put one foot in front of the other (a.k.a walking) and enjoy a wealth of physical and emotional benefits.
If you’re looking for reasons, here are just —> a few (SEVENTEEN!)<— ways that walking is beneficial .…
- Connect with nature / grounding
- Clearing your thoughts
- Improved / better digestion
- Strengthening and lengthening muscles
- Detoxification of the body (and mind!)
- Oxygenation of the body / improved breathing
- Mood elevation
- Joint lubrication / pain relief
- Reduction of whole body inflammation
- Balances blood sugar
- Stabilizes blood pressure
- Improves balance issues
- Improves memory
- Do-able option for those with muscle and joint pain issues and/or limited mobility
- Natural stress-reliever
- Strengthens and boosts the immune system
- Has meditative benefits
Isn’t that enough to get you out the door? Walking is so simple, it’s easy to overlook it as a viable fitness option. It can be done indoors or out, rain or shine. It can be done by anyone with the ability to stand and walk … even if it’s just for a limited time.
Whether you start by walking to your mailbox and back, or walking around the block, it’s simple to create a routine that’s suited for your personal needs.
Want some tips to begin?
Here are Six Success Tips designed to keep your daily walking routine in step –
- 1) Comfortable shoes and clothing –
Choose supportive shoes and loose clothing. Wear clothes in layers that can easily be added or subtracted as you go. Remember that your body temperature will likely fluctuate as you walk.
- 2) Consistency –
Plan to walk at roughly the same time daily and make a habit of it (by implementing tip #6)!
- 3) Plan ahead –
Be prepared for weather setbacks – too chilly, too hot, too whatever…). Designate a “plan B” location such as an indoor shopping mall, a gym, or even pop in a favorite walking DVD at home.
- 4) Take a buddy (fleshy or furry) –
There’s nothing like accountability to ensure success, right? Take your pet, your friend, your neighbor or anyone who’s willing to go along.
- 5) Dizziness an issue?
Use a walking stick or cane to steady your body and pace yourself. And, because walking itself improves balance, you may not need assistance as you grow stronger.
- 6) Tracking –
Be sure to write your fitness activities and goals on a calendar or tracking sheet. Tracking your accomplishments builds motivation. It’s a powerful key to success!
There’s nothing like a soundtrack to accompany your walks. I couldn’t write about walking without a few melodies popping into my head. Did the same ones pop into yours?
What’s your favorite walking tune? Share in the comments below!
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Oh, Sue, I am so frustrated. I have been an avid walker for all the reasons you share except that I own cats not dogs for walking. So far, none seem interested. Smiling. Wonderful advice. However, I have two major areas of pain other than FM and OA I am contending with. I have chronic tendon issues on the inside of right foot which gets so bad if walk daily like I did before. I know, one can get a shot. But doesn’t seem worth it to me as shortly returns. In addition, I now have possible “sciatica’ pain on my left side which is acute but not cute. Walking does make it worse though not much comfort no matter what I do. I sleep with heating pad in order to get to sleep. Been doing stretches and do exercise as I can via glider which seems to not affect foot issue. I know I cannot be non-mobile. I have to wait until November 12th (unless cancellation) for my neurology appointment. In the meantime, I am working on losing 10 lbs. It is far harder when cannot exercise like I want to or need to
. My cholesterol was up this time as well. I decided not to go on medication as my ratio is good and my bp is more than fine except in doctor’s office–white coat issues. Anyway, I loved this article and have always been an avid walker all my life and earned the reputation as the ‘walking lady’. I didn’t go back to tennis this year either mainly due to Dupuytren’s Hand issues and my daughter’s schedule. I desire to reverse all of this. I am working on age 61 but it appears that I am more like age 75. Any suggestions?
I think my favorite walking tunes are instrumentals. Preferably with a celtic vibe to them. I find it hard to walk due to living an hour away from my full time job. By the time I work all day and drive an hour home and feed my family walking to bed is about all I have in me. It is relaxing though when I manage it and your reasons for walking are right on the mark. I just have to make myself do it.
so many great reasons to walk. Going to dust of my shoes and start slowly now! Thanks for supporting Fibro Friday each week at Fibro Bloggers Directory. Your’e great information helping those with fibromyalgia and chronic illness is much appreciated
I tried to load the Stop Feeding Yourself Pain guide, but the link won’t work. As for the walking, I am trying, but it is extremely painful!! I have RA and Fibro.
Hi Elaine – thanks so much for letting me know. I’ve looked up your account, and I see the reason for the confusion. I’ll email you the guide just to make sure you have it. Thanks again!
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