Stacia’s personal challenge of the week is walking 60 minutes a day to improve her aerobic strength, energy capacity, and endurance. To see her upcoming challenges, check out her challenge of the week page under the Agenda tab.
Well, this is not really a big challenge for me, because I do walk a lot in general. I get to places usually by walking, just out of habit. However, when given the choice of taking the bus, or the school shuttle, or any form of transportation to get around faster, I always opt for the that instead of walking. Because simply I am one of those time-bound person who follows her schedule of the day, personal or business-wise.
So this week, I’ve been walking so much – even if it only takes 20 minutes to reach a place, I’ve walked an additional 10 minutes without the public transportation. i can’t give you numbers of my heart rate and all that, but I can well be sure that my posture has improved, my back is straighter, and I seem to walk faster. I also held my head higher just because i’m out in the sun more.
It seems easier to breathe out and speak in a clear voice whenever I’m talking with people, well, I don’t know whether walking has that kind of effect, but I guess it’s all just about the straight posture, not to mention stronger legs too, especially from all that squats I did last week.
However, I’m not confident as yet to face myself on the weight scale, even though I know I have lost a little bit of weight. I haven’t been on the scale for about 3 months now, during which my jeans has expanded and contracted. But right now, I can feel my watch and my jeans getting so loose right now, they keep sliding.
Nagoya City University researchers in Japan believe that the protective effect of physical exercise could decrease the chances of developing breast cancer by 55%. The study, published in the medical journal Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers and Prevention, involves the researchers following 30,000 women from ages 40 to 69 and their lifestyle habits over a 12-year period.
“We recommend walking for one hour a day, along with additional weekly exercise, to protect against breast cancer, regardless of menopausal status or body mass index,” the researchers wrote.
When you continue this daily habit in the long run, you’re better off with more dramatic benefits for your heart health. “If you exercise more, your vessels dilate more. The more a vessel dilates, the healthier the vessel,” said Michael McConnell, associate professor of cardiovascular medicine at Stanford University in California.
Vasodilation is defined as the ability of the heart and its working arteries to expand and contract. When these arteries get more elastic (through exercise), where Stanford researchers found that subjects have increased their vasodilation by 50% just by walking an hour a day, they’ve walked away with a stronger cardiovascular system and therefore less chances of getting heart attacks.
To begin with, researchers studied healthy subjects, 212 men and women between ages 60 to 72, who have no history of heart disease of any kind. This study, which was published in the Journal of the American College of Cardiology: Cardiovascular Imaging, found that those with moderate-activity levels, such as walking for an hour a day, had their coronary arteries dilated 50% more than those who did lower-activity levels. McConnell also stated that those who included higher-activity levels at least once a week (think tennis, swimming) dilated their arteries twice as much, implying that exercise is directly impacting the performance of the heart.
Recent studies like these have proven physical exercise and its benefits for the elderly. But another study on middle-aged women, published in the Journal of American Medical Association, showed that there are little to no weight loss results many women today want to achieve. In fact, they gained weight over time, suggesting that weight gain is inevitable as women age.
Researchers from Harvard’s Brigham and Women Hospital studied 34,079 non-dieting middle-aged women, following their exercise habits for 13 years, and the participants gained an average weight of around 6 pounds during the study.
Only 13% of women with heathy weight to begin with, a body mass index less than 25, gained little or no weight during the study. They are the ones who get moderate-activity exercise for about an hour daily. Other women who began already overweight eventually get that amount of exercise, but results suggested that that wasn’t enough to achieve weight loss.
“There’s no sugarcoating about it,” said Dr. I-Min Lee, the lead author of the study. “You can eat a candy bar in two minutes. Most are at least 200 calories,” working those off would require walking for about an hour.
Nevertheless, it does not mean you have to give up exercise once and for all.
Even if your ultimate goal is to lose weight, you can still achieve other numerous benefits out of exercise that you cannot see from the mirror. Bigger heart, stronger vessels, and robust blood circulation are the things that make the process of aging slower. And that can be done by simply walking an hour a day.
Not only does it boosts your heart health, but if you practice doing it, lady, the more you increase your sex appeal too.
How a woman walks tells more than she may think. The more flexible those hips sway, the more she has the ability to reach vaginal orgasm. “This could reflect the free, unblocked energetic flow from the legs through the pelvis for the spine,” cites the study published in The Journal of Sexual Medicine.
Two trained sexologists observed walks of women in the study and were 82% accurate in picking out women with greater vaginal orgasm potential.
“It is that the vaginally orgasmic women do not have blocked pelvis muscles. As a result, the walk is natural, with the natural unobstructed connection between leg, pelvis, and spine movement,” says researcher Stuart Brody, a psychology professor at the University of West Scotland.
“It might be that the women have the capacity for vaginal orgasm, but have not yet had sufficient experience or met a man of sufficient quality to induce vaginal orgasm,” the authors wrote.
It’s either that, or you have been in fulfilling relationships, physically and emotionally, in your love history. “Such a confidence might also be related to the relationship(s) that a woman has had, given the finding that specifically penile-vaginal orgasm is associated with indices of better relationship quality,” states the authors.
The simplest way to change right now is improving your posture. One can determine how you treat yourself and others just by watching how you stand. So if you did your squats and you keep walking straight, you might just be exuding how sexy you are.
So walk on.
Adams, Stephen. “Walking an hour a day boosts heart health“. The Telegraph, 14 Jun, 2011. Web.
Alexander, Brian. “Your Walk May Reveal More Than You Think“. MSNBC, 15 Sep, 2008. Web.
Devlin, Kate. “Walking an hour a day can cut women’s risk of breast cancer by half“. The Telegraph. 10 Dec, 2008. Web.
Tanner, Lindsey. “For women, fighting flab requires an hour a day: Study suggests current U.S. exercise guidelines won’t stop weight gain“. MSNBC, 23 Mar, 2010. Web.