The fact is, as humans, our bodies have a great deal of potential, muscularly speaking. And for most of us, that potential lies dormant. To a certain extent, you could even say that movement is our purpose. It’s easy to know the purpose of inanimate things, such as a blender or a cup. A blender mixes things and a cup holds liquids. Some might even say that the cup wants to hold liquids, the blender wants to blend. In the same respect we can also say that our muscles want to move. Sadly, most of the time, they get very little action.
The latest popular research on exercise is that you need to get at least a little bit about every 30 to 40 minutes, even if you run 6 miles every day when you get off work. Not doing so take years off your life.
What about the mental health benefit? I like to sum it up like this: What happens in the mind happens in the body; what happens in the body, happens in the mind. If your mind feels like it’s rushing around from thought to thought and your anxiety level is building, take a walk. The rhythmic movement of your arms, legs and breath will gradually bring your thoughts into order as well, and the anxiety will dissipate. If you are feeling pulled down by the weight of a sad or depressed mood, your forward momentum will get you unstuck, get your mind moving forward again.
Like all healthy practices, walking is one that benefits you exponentially over time. Do it in the moment you realize you need it. Do it every day whether you feel like you need it or not. For best results I recommend leaving your mobile device behind.