They say that a healthy breakfast is a great way to start the day, but we disagree, at least in part.
While starting your morning off with a healthy breakfast is beneficial, we recommend starting your day off with an early morning walk.
I'm forced to do this because I have a dog, but that's not the point, alright?
Today, we’re looking at the benefits of morning walks.
When you think of cardio, what’s the first image that springs into your mind’s eye?
Is it you hunched over a treadmill for the 5th time in a week, starting at the same four walls, watching the timer until it’s time to get off and hit the showers?
Perhaps it’s you going for a jog or a high-intensity bike ride around the block?
Whatever you envision cardio to be, we’re fairly certain that walking isn’t high on your list of priorities, but it should be.
Walking is a great form of cardio that doesn’t get the love it should, and that’s a real shame.
Whereas walking at any time is beneficial, for a lot of people, a morning walk is perfect to get your steps in.
The Health Benefits Of Morning Walks:
1. More Energy For The Rest Of The Day
If you started off your day with HIIT training in the gym that left you sweating, out of breath, and physically exhausted, then you’d struggle to find the energy and motivation needed to get you through the rest of the day.
If however, you start off your day with a low-impact walk in the morning, as well as getting some exercise, you’ll also find that you have the more physical and mental energy for the rest of the day.
Walking will help make you feel more energized and alert, helping to set your day up perfectly.
2. See That Sunrise
Fewer scenes in life are more beautiful or magical than an early morning sunrise.
If you decide that you want to walk in the morning, if you set your alarm early enough and get out nice and early, you can enjoy watching the sun come up in the morning as you get your steps in and get some much-needed cardiovascular exercise.
An early morning walk is great because you can find the perfect spot to watch the sun come up.
3. You’ll Have The Rest Of Your Day
Another awesome benefit is the fact that it will free up the rest of your day.
If you work out later in the day, after work, or after doing what needs to be done, you still can’t relax and unwind because you know that you still need to exercise.
If you get out of bed nice and early and start walking before everyone else is up, you then get to free up the rest of your day because you’ve already done your exercise.
4. Great For Your Mental Health
A lot is being said about mental health lately, and if there are ways in which you can improve your mental health, you should take them.
Walking early on is great for your mental health as it gets you outside, it helps boost endorphins such as serotonin that make you feel good, plus it helps to keep anxiety, stress, and depression at bay.
5. You’ll Burn Fat
Forget fad diets, forget slimming shakes, and forget weird workouts that you hate doing, if you want to lose weight, walking is a great way to begin.
One hour of walking could potentially burn off between 200 and 250 calories on average, which may not sound like much, but add this up over the course of the week, and you could easily shed a pound or two of fat if your diet is on point.
6. Lower Your Blood Pressure
As you are no doubt aware, hypertension is one of the most serious health ailments in the developed world.
Hypertension, AKA high blood pressure, can be fatal which is why it’s so important to get your blood pressure under control as soon as possible.
Walking has been proven to gradually reduce blood pressure, making it one of the best treatments for hypertension in existence.
7. No Excuses For Later On
Another fantastic benefit that people seem to overlook all of the time is the fact that it removes any excuses for later on.
One of the main reasons why people fail to exercise later in the day is because they claim they’re too tired, or they’re too busy and don’t have the time.
If you get up early in the morning and go walking, however, this removes the excuses for later on because you’ve already woken up and gotten it done.
8. Great For Fasted Cardio
We aren’t about to get into a heated debate about whether or not you believe fasted cardio to work because that would take us all day.
Instead, we’re going to work on the assumption that fasted cardio works for you.
Fasted cardio is basically a cardio exercise performed on an empty stomach in a fasted state.
There is evidence to suggest it can improve and speed up fat loss.
Walking early in the morning is perfect for fasted cardio, due largely to the fact that you’ll be in a fasted state when you wake up.
9. Build A Positive Mindset For The Rest Of Your Day
Not only does walking in the morning help to improve your energy levels both physically and mentally, but another benefit is also the fact that it will help improve your mindset for the day ahead.
Early morning walking will help to get you motivated and in the mood for whatever the day has to throw at you.
It will not only help you to become more productive, but it will also help you to become more positive as well.
10. It’s Great Cardio
Cardio exercise, regardless of where it comes from, is great for your heart.
Walking is a fantastic form of cardio that will benefit your heart no end.
Walking helps to reduce cholesterol, lowers blood pressure, strengthens the heart, and improves your cardiovascular system in general.
Heart disease claims more lives each year than any other illness or disease so if by simply walking in the morning, you can improve the health of your heart, that has to be seen as a good thing, right?
11. Walking Is Easy
Generally speaking, another of the amazing benefits is the fact that it is so easy.
Walking is a form of exercise that virtually anybody can do.
It doesn’t need any practice or specialist equipment, and there isn’t a technique to master.
You simply throw on your walking shoes and your gear and off you go.
12. Walking Is Free
If you want to go train at a gym or athletics club, you can do so in exchange for money.
Now, money doesn’t grow on trees and not everybody has a never-ending bank account so if you can save money, you should save money.
For those who want to exercise but don’t have the funds, walking is the perfect activity to take part in because of the fact that it is completely free.
You don’t need a piece of fancy gym equipment, you just need to find somewhere to walk and you’re all set.
13. No Equipment Is Needed
Sticking with what we’ve already mentioned a few times before.
Another of the brilliant benefits that we need to look at is the fact that you don’t need any equipment.
Okay, if you want to get technical, you will need a decent pair of shoes and some comfortable walking gear, but other than that, that’s pretty much it.
Walking is great because you don’t need to spend heaps of money on equipment, or carry lots of kits around with you because it isn’t needed.
14. See Some Stunning Sights
Where you choose to do your early morning walking is up to you, but if you are located nearby to some gorgeous countryside, hiking trails, or locations with nice views, getting up early will provide you with some stunning backdrops as you walk.
Imagine hiking through a mountain trail as the sun comes up and imagine how spectacular that view will be.
Throw in the birds, wildlife, and nature in general, and you have a stunning setting for your walk.
15. Tone Your Legs
Obviously, walking won’t let you pack 10 pounds of muscle mass onto either leg, or build a set of wheels that Tom Platz would be jealous of, but it will help to gently tone your muscles.
Walking will tone your calves, quads, hamstrings, and glutes, and if you add an incline in there you’ll be surprised by just how sore your legs feel the following day.
Leg DOMS after a walk has to be a sign that things are working, right?
16. Walking In The Morning Is Quieter
Another reason why you might want to consider going on your daily walk early in the morning is due to the fact that it will be much quieter.
If you walk early, people will either still be in bed or just wake up and get ready for their days.
There will be fewer people to hold you up, and if you walk in a residential area, there will be fewer cars and less traffic on the roads so it will be safer as well.
17. Plan Your Day Ahead
If you decide to go through a brutal high-intensity workout in the morning, as you train you won’t be able to think about anything else because you’re just focussing on getting through your workout.
If however, you go on an early morning walk, you’ll find that because it is so slow going and relaxing, you can plan your day and relax alone with your thoughts.
Whether you’re planning how to tackle that report due at work, or deciding which healthy meals to cook for the week ahead, when you walk early in the morning you can think about all of these things and decide which plan of action to take.
18. Take Your Own Time
One of the best benefits is the fact that it allows you to go at your own pace.
If you wake up early enough, or if you don’t have plans later, you can take as much, or as little time as you like.
By walking in the morning, you aren’t rushing so you can take your time if you wish, or you can simply pick up the tempo and walk a little quicker if time is against you.
19. Improved Longevity
Walking is great cardio, and cardio exercise, in general, is very good for your body.
We won’t list each and every benefit associated with cardio, but take it from us, there are plenty.
Therefore, walking regularly will not only increase your longevity and help you to live longer, but it will also improve the quality of your life as well.
Okay, so as you can see, the benefits of walking in the morning are plentiful so if you’ve been thinking about doing it for a while, our advice is to stop thinking and start doing it.
Walking is good fun, it’s very good for you, it’s easy to do, and your body will thank you for it as a result.