Walking is as simple as it gets for a gentle, low-impact exercise that just about anyone can enjoy. In fact, walking can help prevent and improve many common health issues like heart disease, obesity, high blood pressure, diabetes, osteoporosis and depression, to name a few. All you need is a good, supportive pair of walking shoes and a safe place to walk, like Metro Health Village, 5900 Byron Center Avenue in Wyoming.
Metro Health Village has a number of walking routes and even a bike trail — all perfect for an afternoon stroll with the kids or a quick, weeknight workout. Download a Walking/Bike Route map here.
Need a little push to get started? Check out the Couch to 5K Training Program. Even if you’re not looking to set any world records, this program will have you up and active in no time!
Motivation is key when starting a new physical activity. Here are some ideas to help you stay focused and interested every day:
- Wear a pedometer. Increase your steps a little every day until you reach the recommended 10,000 steps a day.
- Get a walking partner – a friend, spouse, child, even the dog!
- Sign up for a race or charity walk like the Metro Way 5K & Family Fun Run or the American Heart Association Heart Walk. An upcoming event gives you a goal to reach.
- Take the stairs instead of the elevator.
- Park farther from the door when running errands.
- Plan a walking meeting at work.
Walking Safety Tips
Above all, it’s important to stay safe, no matter where or when you walk.
- Walk with a buddy whenever possible.
- Carry your name, address and a friend or relative’s phone number in your shoe or pocket.
- Wear a medical bracelet if you have diabetes, an allergy or other condition.
- Carry a cell phone, and let someone know you’re walking routes.
- Avoid deserted or unlit streets, especially after dark.
- Do not use headsets that prevent you from hearing traffic.
- Always walk on the sidewalk; if there is no sidewalk, walk facing traffic.
- Stand clear of buses, hedges, parked cars or other obstacles before crossing so drivers can see you.
- Cross streets at marked crosswalks or intersections, if possible.