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Written by
FionaOutdoors
FionaOutdoors

#Try20 in National Walking Month

Every May, people in the UK are encouraged to walk more as part of National Walking Month. In 2016, the campaign is calling on everyone to pledge to #Try20. The aim is to get more people to walk for 20 minutes each day.

Why we should walk more

The benefits of walking include:
  • Walking is a cheap and simple.
  • Walking is highly accessible to all kinds of people and at all ages.
  • It’s one of the most effective ways to get in shape and lose weight.
  • Walking for just 20 minutes a day can improve fitness levels and reduce stress and anxiety.
  • Walking improves mood and is a great way to clear your head.
  • A brisk 20-minute walk will burn up to 110 calories.
  • The results of 2015 study found that a 20-minute walk each day could be enough to reduce an individual’s risk of early death (Ekelund et al. 2015).

10 ideas: How to walk for 20 minutes each day

1 Set a #Try20 challenge: You will be more motivated to walk if friends and family also pledge to #Try20. You can set a goal/challenge to walk for 20 minutes each day for a set period or count steps with a steps counter gadget. 2 Call a walking meeting at work. Instead of sitting down with a coffee to talk at work, get everyone to walk and talk. Walking can be a great way to come up with ideas and be more creative. A walk and talk is also a good ay to met with friends for a catch-up gossip. large-3 3 Walk to, or from, work. Or try to incorporate some walking into your commute. You could get off the bus or train a stop earlier and walk the rest or park your car a 20-minute walk from the office. 4 Get snappy happy with your walks. Take your smartphone or a camera with you when you walk this weekend and compile an album of the things you see by taking photos. You can get the whole family to take part in this. Aim to discover new places and new views. [caption id="attachment_19542" align="aligncenter" width="100%"]See new views. See new views.[/caption] 5 Walk the kids to school. Many parents choose to drive their children to the school gates. Instead, try to work out a way to walk with the kids a few times a week. 6 Have a “happy shoes” day. This is a brilliant idea for children and a fun way to get them to walk more. To create happy shoes you could upcycle a pair of old shoes or jazz up their favourite shoes with a new pair of colourful laces. Then go out and walk in your happy shoes. 7 Walk to your lunch. Instead of relying on the workplace cafeteria or sandwiches you have brought with you (and normally eat at your desk), go for a walk to find your lunch. If you prefer to eat your homemade sandwiches, take them to a park 10 minutes from the office. That way you get 20 minutes of total walking for your lunch. [caption id="attachment_19541" align="aligncenter" width="100%"]Walk a new way to work or to meet friends. Walk a new way to work or to meet friends.[/caption] 8 Take the long cut. Instead of trying to find a short cut way to get somewhere, plan to have an extra 20 minutes of walking somewhere en route. You could make the walk longer by strolling through a park, along a canal or on a beach. 9 Walk somewhere new at weekends. Go for a longer walk in local countryside at the weekend. You could walk a hill or find a countryside or forest trail. Just make sure you walk somewhere new because that will make you more motivated. 10 Enter an event. There are plenty of walking events to enjoy across the country. If you enter one of these you will have a walking training goal to aim for and this offers good motivation for more walking. You never know, you might find yourself enjoying walking so much that you book a walking holiday! The chances are, the more you walk, the more you’ll realise the benefits.
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