Walking is an Easy and Effective Introduction to Cardiovascular Exercise | Spirituality and well-being

stressors of everyday life and give yourself some precious time alone. Fresh air and some time to think can do wonders for your mood.

Or make it a social event and walk with others: invite friends, family or co-workers to join you. Taking a walk can be a great opportunity to chat with an existing friend or bond with a new one.

Enjoy time in nature: Walking in parks, beaches, or along hiking trails or riverbanks can boost the mood you experience with exercise. Spending time in nature can release endorphins, the brain’s wellness chemical effects that improve mood and relieve stress.

Walk in a mall or on a treadmill: When the weather is bad, you can quickly walk around a mall while window-shopping or use a treadmill at a gym or club and watch your TV show, series, or listen to your podcast favorite.

Walking a Dog: If you don’t have a dog, you can volunteer to walk homeless dogs for an animal shelter or rescue group. Not only will you be helping yourself, you will also be helping to socialize and exercise the dogs, making them more adoptable.

Try walking mindfully and with focus: Adding an element of mindfulness to a walk can help break the flow of worries and negative thoughts that many of us experience when we’re stressed, anxious, or depressed. Instead of focusing on your thoughts, focus on how your body feels as you move. Notice the sensation of your feet hitting the ground, for example, or the sensation of wind or sun on your skin, or the rhythm of your breathing.

Hiking is cardiovascular or aerobic exercise. These are endurance activities that use your large muscle groups in rhythmic movement for a sustained period of time. Cardiovascular exercise makes your heart race, and you’ll breathe harder than usual, and you may even feel a little short of breath.

Cardiovascular activities include: short walk; race; aerobics classes; climbing stairs; Basketball; sneakers; walking; cycling; rowing and swimming; soccer; dance lessons; elliptical training etc.

Whatever your age, “cardio” can help increase your lung capacity, strengthen your heart and muscles, and improve your endurance and fitness. In addition, cardiovascular exercise can also: help control weight by burning calories and regulating appetite; lower blood pressure and control blood sugar; reduce the risk of falls in the elderly; improve memory and thinking (even fight mental decline and control symptoms of Alzheimer’s disease); reduce joint pain and stiffness; release tension, improving mood and helping you sleep better at night.