North Carolina Department of Correction News - March 1999

For your health

Walking can do wonders for your health

Why walk?

The truth about walking

Why Walk?

Because it feels good! Believe it or not the human body was designed to move. Our anatomical systems – heart, lungs, muscles, bones – were all meant to be part of an active being. If we stop moving, these systems begin to deteriorate. We gain weight, lose muscle and bone and have heart problems, which could lead us to an early death. Research clearly shows a direct correlation between physical activity, cardiovascular health and longevity.

Walking facts

•Walking is the simplest, safest, weight-bearing aerobic exercise that will help strengthen bones, control weight and condition the cardiovascular system.

•Consistency is the most important factor in developing a healthy walking physical activity program for life.

•Thirty-minute walks do not have to be done at once. They can divided into three 10-minute walks.

•Research shows that people who walk approximately 20 to 25 miles per week outlive their sedentary counterparts by several years.

•On average, every minute of walking extends your life by two minutes. Every cigarette smoked cuts your life by five minutes.

•Walking an extra 20 minutes each day burns off seven pounds of body fat per year.

•Longer, moderate paced daily walks are best for losing weight. Shorter, faster walks are best for cardiovascular conditioning.

•The average American spends three percent of his or her total life outdoors.

•By substituting a one-mile walk for a 250-calorie candy bar each day, you'd lose 15 pounds in 150 days of one-mile walks.

•By substituting a five-minute mini-walk for dessert every day, you could lose more than 20 pounds of fat in one year. u

— Office of Staff Development and Traini

NC DOC Homepage
E-mail NC DOC