Spring into Spring with a WALK!

By Mel Foley, Physiotherapist

14 September 2016

Melbourne Walks

So as I look around and see the buds on the rose bushes, the leaves budding on the trees, new growth in my little herb garden and feel the warmth returning to the air I think to myself – I can’t wait to get outside and move! It has been a long cold and wet winter and even I have been hiding in the gym for the last 3 months to keep fit. But it’s not the same is it?

Not nearly as great as getting out for a walk in our beautiful city!

I ventured out to the park this week and once I got over the frenzy that was my local dog park…French Bulldogs, Beaglier, Miniature Dachshunds and every type of ‘oodle’ you can think of… I thought “how good is this to be in nature at the end of the street and breathing in the fresh air?”!!!

It didn’t take too long before I had walked a couple of kilometres and was feeling the benefits of exercise.

So what do we get from going for a walk?

Well for starters, it gets us upright and out of the shape of a chair. So much of the modern world is spent sitting and sitting is one of the leading causes of poor health. Everything from back pain to bowel cancer, including mental health problems can benefit from less sitting so, why not walk to counter the ‘chair shape’.

Secondly, it improves your blood flow and, if you push your walk to a brisk pace so that you may still talk some words, but not recite poetry then you are starting to challenge your cardiovascular system… that is training. This means that after regular brisk walks of greater than 30 minutes 3-5 times per week your body will become better at delivering oxygen to your muscles.

Research shows that regular brisk walks reduce blood pressure and can help manage stress – in a world that can seem more and more full of pressure, a brisk walk at lunchtime might be just the answer and it is doesn’t cost a thing!

Because walking increases your metabolic rate (amount of energy needed for the body to continue functioning) it means that it also assists is weight control – so those extra winter kilos that you’re carrying around can start to fall away and get you looking great for summer.

All in all there are so many obstacles to starting some exercise programs but walking for most of us is easy, affordable, enjoyable and right outside our door. So before your spend another night on the couch, think about a 30 minute walk to stretch your legs and get out and smell the roses.

Check out these great walks in Melbourne.

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