St. Augustine Woman's Journal - Educational Resource to the Women of St. Johns County Since 2009

By Richard Johnson DPM
Coastal Foot and Ankle Wellness Center 

Use Your Feet and Walk to Wellness

 

August 1, 2017 | View PDF



It is recommended that adults participate in moderate physical activity for at least 30 minutes on most days of the week. Walking has the lowest impact on bones and joints.

Benefits of walking include:

• Reduced risk of coronary heart disease. Improved blood pressure, blood sugar levels, and blood lipid profile

Women in the Nurses Health Study who walked at least three hours per week reduced their risk of heart attack and other coronary illnesses by 35% compared to those who did not walk

• Maintain body weight and lower risk of obesity Walking at a moderate pace for 30-60 minutes burns stored fat and can build muscle to speed up your metabolism.

• Reduced risk of osteoporosis

Walking is effective in decreasing the rate of bone loss in the legs.

• Reduced risk of breast and colon cancer

Women who walked briskly at least two hours weekly decreased their breast cancer risk by 18%. Routine walking can also help to prevent colon cancer and improve the quality of life of colon cancer survivors.

• Reduced risk of non-insulin dependent diabetes (Type 2)

The Diabetes Prevention Program showed that walking 150 minutes per week and losing 7% of your body weight can reduce your risk of diabetes by 58%.

• Enhanced mental well-being

Research has shown depression is lowered 47% in those moderately physically active for 30 minutes, three to five times a week, after 12 weeks.

As we age we need more exercise. Being physically active is key to maintaining quality of life and independence. Walking improves fitness, physical function, and prevents physical disability for aging adults. For older adults, moderate activity can come from longer sessions of walking, shorter sessions of vigorous walking or stair climbing. Walking is very versatile, allowing you to complete this activity indoors or outdoors as well as regulate the intensity. Here are a few tips to help you be safe and get the most out of your workout.

Getting Started

1. Before beginning your walking program, check with your doctor.

If you have a medical condition or recent injury, check with your doctor first to prevent problems. Preexisting conditions won't necessarily prevent you from walking, as it can help prevent disease progression and other disease symptoms.

2. Invest in good shoes.

Invest in a good quality walking shoe or running shoe. Your podiatrist can help you with proper fit. Wear appropriate clothing – including sunscreen.

3. Warm up.

Stretching before your exercise is important because it warms up your muscles. Begin your exercise slowly, gradually increasing time and intensity, which gives your body time to adjust.

4. Monitor your heart rate and breathing.

Walk at a pace that is comfortable yet challenging to you. Drink plenty of water, at least eight to ten 8 oz. cups of water per day. Do not overexert yourself. Stop and rest if you do not feel well.

5. Get a pedometer.

Using a pedometer is a great way to track your steps and monitor your progress.

We have been treating your feet in St. Augustine and Palatka for over 18 years. Make an appointment today with Richard Johnson, DPM or Jose Concha, DPM at (904)826-1900 in St. Augustine or (386)328-1122 in Palatka. At Coastal Foot & Ankle Wellness Center, we are setting the highest standards for your foot and ankle care.

 
 

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