When is the best time to walk? Well, that depends on where you are and what you need but I can confidently say there is not a bad time to walk. Depending on how much time I have and the distance I am faced with, I will always look at walking as my first option for transport. Walking as a mode of transport gets me where I need to be and ticks off a lot of my daily health objectives. However, to ensure I get my daily step-count and raise my walking heart rate for over 45 minutes, I often slot in a few 2000 footstep boosters throughout the day.
The Best Time To Walk For 15 Minutes
Whatever your step count target, 15 minutes should be enough time to give you a boost. People who are shooting for 10000 or more steps daily, should look at 15 minutes as enough time to walk about 2000 steps or roughly 1 mile in distance. If you are slightly less active, or you are building your fitness up to 10000 steps daily, This article can still be helpful, you just need to use a target that will push you but is a realistic target in 15 minutes.
Fifteen minutes or a quarter of an hour is not a long time, you have four of them every hour and 96 of them every day. Even with all of the quarter-of-an-hours that you are required at work, or to sleep everyone should still be able to find a few to dedicate to your walking booster sessions.
Setting yourself 3 periods of 15 minutes throughout the day seems like nothing but will give you a huge chunk of your step target. You can pick these booster sessions whenever you want, as long as you are raising your walking game, I don’t care how you do it. However, hopefully, you will take some motivation from walking for health at specific times of day…
Is Morning The Best Time To Walk?
Get up before everybody else, it’s peaceful. Do not check social media first! The last thing you want is everybody’s personal PR marketing their best self on your profile. The first thing you want is a clear head, don’t worry about work, that’s later. Don’t worry about the kids, they’re asleep. Do not let any of your responsibilities become your thoughts until you have done 15 minutes of brisk walking… If it’s safe and warm enough, go outside, if not you can march along to an indoor walking video to get your steps.
If you push yourself when you exercise your body can produce cortisol to deal with the stress. However, most adults naturally have higher levels of cortisol in their bodies in the morning. This means your body is better equipped to deal with exercise in the morning than later in the day.
There have also been studies that have proved morning sessions yield more favourable results than later in the day when measuring blood pressure and quality of sleep.
However, for me, the best thing about morning walking is the way I feel after exercise sets me up for the day. Whether it’s the endorphins or the neurogenesis, all I know is I feel 100%, I feel “on it” for the day.
Is It Best To Walk In The Middle Of The Day?
If you want to keep every last one of your spare morning minutes for sleeping then I’ll accept that, I am judging you but I will accept it. Thankfully there are great benefits to exercising in the middle of the day as well. A lot of people’s work and fitness schedules do not mix because they need time to get to the gym, workout, shower, and eat all inside a 1-hour break. That’s if they get an hour, some places only offer 30-minute lunch breaks.
However, we are walkers. We are an enlightened bunch who shall be smug if we deem it necessary and right now I deem it necessary. Even if we only get 30 minutes, we can walk 2000 steps and eat something. We don’t need to get to a gym and we probably are not getting sweaty enough to need to shower. You could even hold meetings on foot if the nature of the meeting allowed it.
Even though morning sessions may deliver increased benefits relating to blood pressure and sleep, you will still achieve these health benefits whatever time of day you walk. You will also have increased circulation causing neurogenesis and a midday exercise session is proven to make people more productive and feel more energetic.
I like it because it breaks up my working day and so it seems to pass by quicker.
Should I Walk In The Evening?
The evenings are a popular time for most people to exercise, probably because that is when we have more free time. Popping into the gym on the way home, or changing into your running gear as soon as you get back and heading straight back out. Well as walkers, we also do not need to worry about that.
We can walk some or all of the way home from work, we can walk the dog or walk around the block while we natter to friend on the phone. As well as the same health benefits from a walk earlier in the day, we can use our walk to recharge our batteries so we feel freshest on our own time.
Whether listening to music that you love, working on your own projects, or just reading a good book, doing these activities while walking will give birth to new brain cells while you feel stimulated and fulfilled… quite literally starting as they mean to go on.
Is The Best Time To Walk At Bed Time?
In order for us to get to sleep, our bodies and brains need to know it’s time to power down. For some people, this is as simple as going to bed at the same time every night, for others they might anchor a bedtime routine. Having a pre-sleep ritual can be a great way to tell your body it’s time to rest even if your sleeping pattern is irregular.
Making walking a part of that routine could well be a missing piece of the puzzle for many people’s health goals.
Walking is low enough impact that it is unlikely to cause a cortisol spike, but intense enough to push your heart rate beyond 50% of your max bpm. Walking has many of the same benefits at any time of day, but the USP of walking at bedtime is that it ensures the excess blood glucose is utilized at a time of day when your circadian rhythm is less equipped to deal with it.
Your body will be free to put you into a deep sleep to replenish your mind and body. Good quality sleep is essential for good mental health, muscle regeneration, and weight loss, all of the benefits we are walking for.
Is It Best To Walk After A Meal
For most people eating a balanced diet, it shouldn’t matter from a health point of view. If your walk is intense, you would need to ensure you ate after your walk. But we are just talking about a quick 15-minute booster walk so it’s fine to do it after you’ve eaten.
Studies have shown that walking for fifteen minutes after a meal can have digestive benefits and help reduce the risk of diabetes type-2. This is especially beneficial in the evenings. However, walking in the afternoon can also help fend off the feeling of being tired after lunch.
I promote walking after a meal but it really is down to personal preference, do what feels right, and facilitates success when aiming for health goals.
So When Is The Best Time To Walk?
Every time you can! The best time to walk is when you have the time. We know walking delivers weight loss benefits whether you are walking fast or slow, that raising your walking heart rate is priceless for health benefits and that steps are steps no matter what we are doing. So find every excuse to increase your daily step count should be your top priority
Let me know your thoughts on the matter in the comments below