Go for a walk. Yes, even if it's cold outside.
It might be a little chilly outside, and unless you're in a part of the country that reached temperatures around -40 (-48 with the windchill) this weekend, going for a walk even in the cold is another simple first set of steps towards bolstering a self-care routine. We often embrace hibernation during cold winter days leaving home only, for the essentials, a habit far too easily reinforced by the lockdowns. To break free from our enclosure this week, we've started adding a routine of going out for a walk, even if it is a little cold outside.
The Arthritis Foundation suggests there are at least 12 Benefits of Walking. Some are even enhanced by going for a walk in colder weather.
1. Improve Circulation
2. Shore Up Your Bones 3. Enjoy a Longer Life 4. Lighten Your Mood
5. Lose Weight
6. Strengthen Muscles
7. Improve Sleep
8. Support Your Joints
9. Improve Your Breath
10. Slow Mental Decline 11. Lower Alzheimer’s Risk 12. Do More for Longer It's also suggested that a cold-weather walk can increase caloric burn as your body expends more energy to stay warm, and through the same mechanism, your heart gets a better workout as it's forced to help increase blood flow to warm your extremities. However, you'll also want to adjust your cold-weather goals, knowing it will be harder on your body than attempting the same exercise in a warmer environment.
There are many benefits to getting out and taking a short walk, even if it's just 10-15 minutes to clear your head. So grab a toque and some mittens and get outside for a stroll to breathe in some fresh air today. It might lend to a creative solution for a problem you've been working on, or it could just help you feel less trapped.
We'll be trying to take Selah & Stark for more frequent strolls and enjoying the sounds of our surroundings. How do you enjoy your walks? Do you break out the tunes or try to embrace what's going on around you?