The CDC recommends 150 minutes a week of cardio — in stints of at least 10 minutes at a time. I recently saw someone reassure a new exerciser that it’s OK if you don’t get that much exercise, because it’s hard to get that much gym time, and it made me a little sad. Exercise can happen anywhere. If we think of it as something that only happens in a gym, that makes it harder to do — and we should always be looking for ways to make good health easier.
Enter walking. Literally. You can do it anywhere. If you have great mental fortitude, and don’t mind doing laps in a small space, you can even do it in your home. Exercise doesn’t have to be exhausting. In fact, it’s good for health and for athletic improvement to have a mix of “heaviness” in your activity over the course of the week — lots of easy stuff, a bunch of moderate stuff to put your heart through some paces, and a bit of hard stuff to let your body see what it can do.
So don’t worry about packing 150 minutes of exercise into gym visits. Use the gym for strength training and access to large, expensive, or occasional-use equipment you don’t want to have at home. And make your heart and mood and sleep better with regular walking.
Lots and lots of info about walking at Every Body Walk!