How doing a charity walk can be doubly good for you
Most people are on the same page when it comes to understanding that exercise is important for your physical and mental health, but did you know that helping others by walking for charity* brings even more personal benefits? (*or running if it’s your thing of course).
If you are thinking about walking for charity there are many one-off or periodic opportunities to walk for specific causes and a few (including trundl) that allow you to help raise much-needed funds more regularly, so it shouldn’t be too hard to find one to join near you – and here are a few reasons why such charity walks can benefit your body and your soul in the process.
Walking is just what the doctor ordered
As part of UK medical guidelines on health, it’s recommended that we take at least 150 minutes of moderate exercise (i.e. a walk) a week. And if you can walk at the ideal pace of around 2.5 miles an hour (brisk but not rushed), you could also be stimulating your creativity as this is the speed at which our brains are most productive.
Walking could lead to fewer days off sick
Enhanced cardiovascular health, improved balance, lower blood sugar levels, stronger bones are just some of the physical benefits of regular walking, but walking 5-6 miles a week can also help to reduce joint pain and reduce (or even prevent) the worse effects of arthritis. And it’s a great way to boost your immune system – a Harvard Medical School study showed that people walking regularly for at least 20 minutes a day had 43% fewer sick days than those who exercised less frequently.
Walking for a purpose can help you sleep better
Knowing that you’re walking to help others as well as yourself has great benefit to one’s social esteem and emotional wellbeing. Save the Children has named that feeling of accomplishment at the end of charity walk as ‘helpers high’ and a study of older adults by Northwestern Medicine and Rush University Medical Center demonstrated that having a purpose in life and helping others can improve overall sleep quality.
So, whether it’s a hard-core competitive charity walk (or run) that may entail a fundraising commitment or one that is more laid back like trundl and lets you go at your own pace (with the added bonus of not having to raise any funds), make sure you put your best foot forward, happy in the knowledge that you’re doing good for yourself and others simply by getting out and moving.
A win-win all round in our book.