By John Ostapkovich
PHILADELPHIA (CBS) — Today is National Walking Day, urging people to take time away from their computer screens and get a little exercise.
And, experts say, the point is to do it briskly and repeatedly.
“Lace up (your) sneakers and just take a 30 minute walk,” advises Christina Crews of the American Heart Association, the National Walking Day sponsor. “You would be surprised how you feel when you come back from that walk and just how much work you’ll be able to get done. Once your head is clear, once your heart is pumping, you just feel better overall.”
And Crews says that 30 minutes of walking a day, even if begun in middle age, adds to your life expectancy as well as lowering blood pressure and boosting the immune system.
But she says the walk has to be at a brisk pace. If you can carry on a conversation with a friend without huffing a bit, she suggests, you’re going too slowly to get maximum benefit.
And she says the reasons to walk, now and often, are many, but basically it is to combat the factors that make us heavier and sicker than we should be.
It’s a societal problem that can be fought one step at a time. One brisk step. Remember, brisk.