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5 Ways that Daily Walks Improve Your Life

LIFE HAS CHANGED

Let's face it- life in the middle of a pandemic ain't easy. In fact, it's really effing stressful. Whether you run your own business or work from home, this past year has delivered a MASSIVE wake-up call to all of us! 

Life as we know it has been altered for the foreseeable future- from E-learning, stay-at-home orders, capacity restrictions on restaurants and public places, no concerts, everything has gone VIRTUAL.

There's A LOT of BEING INSIDE. I've found that it's even more important to balance that with time outdoors in whatever capacity works for you. As simple as it sounds, many of us don't make the time to get out for a breath of fresh air. But it's the thing we all need to keep us in check and connected to what's most important.

 

 

Living in Colorado for the past four years, I've learned that it's super important to be prepared with the right gear, the right shoes, hat and natural skincare products. Weather here is dry and we're a mile above the sea so the sun shines a little brighter here.  I've connected with so many hikers, climbers, trail runners, joggers and walkers. People don't mess around here- they always seem to be PREPARED. 

 

 

The last few times it has snowed, I put on 2 coats, a warm flannel scarf, my cotton crochet beanie and my rubber snow boots and walk our dogs on a nearby trail. The crisp, clean air feels so lovely to breathe and the gorgeous snow-covered mountain views lend perspective and inspiration especially if I'm feeling tired or struggling with any unclear, unresolved plans or ideas.

 

  

 

1. TUNE OUT TO TUNE IN

Having a chance to get outside, wherever you live in whatever capacity is so crucial to keeping your spirit uplifted and your soul fed. In this tumultuous world we live in, it is so necessary to turn off tech and absorb a little sunlight. To check in with yourself. To check in with your thoughts. To plan next steps, whatever that means to you.

 

I recently read an inspiring article with amazing photographs about a woman named Marsibil Erlendsdottir who runs a small farm and maintains a weather station from a remote location in eastern Iceland, because she loves the freedom of living on one of the most remote places on our planet. It was the most beautiful story and it highlighted the unique life of a woman and her sheep farm, away from all distractions. The kind of life that most of us do not have. 
 
(full article here) 
What struck me most about this article aside from making my entire week is that she goes outside three times a day to walk her dogs for at least an hour no matter what the weather conditions are. She says that it makes her feel free. I implicitly agree with her- getting outside in whatever capacity for ANY stretch of time helps slow you down, reset and streamline your thoughts.




2.  YOUR SKIN WILL THANK YOU

Walking, especially brisk walking, stimulates circulation. While it's great for your organs, it's also AMAZING for your skin. By increasing blood flow, exercise helps nourish cells and keep them vital. Think of it as cleansing your skin from the inside! My recommendation for any outside exercise is to WEAR A HAT that protects your skin from the sun. Also wear protective clothing to guard your shoulders against sunburn. Before I leave for a walk, I always make sure that my face is hydrated with my favorite go-to, and for additional protection, our super effective unscented mineral sunscreen. 

And while researchers are still investigating the connection between stress and skin, it is proven that your sebaceous glands which produce oil in the skin are influenced by stress hormones.

 


3. STRESS MGMT

Walking boosts endorphins, our feel-good hormones. It can also reduce stress hormones and relieve mild depression. Walking improves your mood and can boost your self-esteem but make sure that the conversation you have with yourself while walking is a positive one. Take a moment to celebrate your accomplishments even it was just getting out of bed or preparing a lovely, vegan meal for your family, or having a "no excuses" outlook and walking in the rain or snow. 




4. WALK FOR ENERGY AND STAMINA


Feeling tired and lifeless? Sitting at the computer for hours in a given day? Take a 30 minute walk- I promise you will return with more energy than you had prior. One of our customers, a Physician and runner says that if you're taking a break from running, you will still build up endurance by using your legs and feet to walk, not run. When/if you decide to resume running after walking daily, you'll be surprised at how much your stamina has maintained and maybe even increased.

 

  

5. WALK FOR INSPIRATION

It makes sense that science confirms that walking can inspire your creativity. A recent study at Stanford University found that walking can boost your creative output by nearly 60% and remains for minutes after your walk is finished. Researchers say that the dynamic interaction between the left and right hemispheres of the neocortex of the brain may explain the feelings of euphoria from walking as the brain hemispheres work together, your logical side working in harmony with your creative side. Pretty interesting stuff! 
So, get outside and stretch your body, breathe a little clean air and use that time for your daily self care. I promise you will not regret it. 

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