For most of us pet owners, exercise can be a drag. Unlike the Crossfit bros of this world and spirulina smoothie toting Lululemon, I am not one to seek out the gym. However, that doesn’t mean that I don’t know how fantastic exercise is for me – it is just that I’m tolerably sure there’s a better way. And I think I’ve got it.
The ultimate exercise, recommended by a lazy non-exerciser? Walking your pet, of course! Walking your dog can have a whole array of benefits for not only your physical health but essential effects on your mental health also. If you count yourself in as an exercise-phobic like yours indeed, then read on to learn about the amazing advantages that having a dog can bring about, with light effort and a whole lot of fun.
Positive Effects of doing Exercise
We know that doing exercise is good for us, in an abstract way sort of way. However, why exactly is it so useful for our health? Throughout our progression, up until very recently, humans were created to live very active lives, and they did that out of sheer compulsion. That woolly mammoth was not going to catch and grill itself. Nonetheless, in modern times, with our newly settled lifestyle, we don’t get anywhere near as much exercise as we should. Exercise is hugely beneficial for our bodies in several ways.
Some of the positive effects of getting adequate exercise include:
- Controls weight. This is a moderately obvious one. However, it’s amazingly important to overall health. To avoid difficulties that can come from carrying excess weight, exercise is critical in helping to keep your body at its best healthy size.
- Combat health conditions and diseases. Exercise has been proven to be a natural cure for a whole host of diverse diseases and health conditions, including cardiovascular illness, diabetes, and more. It is a natural and convenient preventative measure that can aid you to avoid a trip to the doctor.
- Improves mood. Exercise can enhance the stimulation and release of essential chemicals in the human brain, which can help to heighten the mood. This makes exercise ideal not only for our bodies but our minds too.
- Boosts stamina. Exercise is beneficial for growing muscles and improving our metabolisms, which can help us in feeling more energetic and intelligent.
- Regulates sleep patterns. Exercise is an outstanding way to improve your sleep patterns if you struggle with insomnia, or just with floating off to sleep sometimes.
Easy Ways to Exercise.
If you exercise-averse, or you are re-starting your health journey after a long while, then it’s a great idea to ease your way back into the exercise game by starting with some easy ways to undertake exercise. Throwing yourself into a 45-minute sprinting exercise the first time you get back into it is just going to put you off, and assist you to go back to your old exercise-free ways. There are several easy ways to incorporate exercise into your life, and while most are simple, some are even fun! Here’s a model to getting started.
1. Walk Your Dog
This is by far the best and most straightforward way to begin reaping the great benefits of exercise. By just fulfilling your pet’s daily exercise needs, you’ll similarly be filling your own. A walk with your pet is a calming and soothing method of relaxing and emptying your head. Benefits of walking your dog about is a win-win situation.
2. Take the Stairs, aka Using Incidental Exercise to Your Advantage
There are opportunities for gentle physical exercise all around, so take the world up on its challenge. Taking the stairs in place of an elevator or escalator is an exceptional way to work more movement into your day, easily. If you’re that kind of person that makes a 5-minute ride to the store, then take the opportunity to utilize your errand into a useful bit of incidental exercise by walking there instead.
3. Make Physical Activity Fun with your Friends or Family
Having the people, we embrace around us can help us to feel better, happier and more motivated, according to Science. So why not take this information and use it, by recruiting your friends and family to do some soothing exercise with you? Try taking some extended walks together, trying a new team game, or even doing some rounds in the ocean together during a day at the beach.
4. Find an Exercise That Doesn’t Feel Like Exercise
Eventually, the best exercise is one that you appreciate doing, as you’re more likely to stay doing it. If you enjoy walking in natural, find a way to fit it into your program. If you need to work out some tension, perhaps taking up boxing is a good idea. Alternatively, if there is nothing you’d instead do than spend time with your canine friend, then make your pup your exercise partner.
The Benefits of Walking Your Dog (Merely 15 minutes a Day Will Do It)
As we earlier mentioned, this has to be one of the best (if not the absolute best!) form of bringing soothing and fun exercise into your life and making it to stick. Walking your dogs has many benefits for your physical health, but also for your mental health, which we will be focusing on here.
Encourages Exercise, Which Rehabilitates the Brain
Exercise is well-known to have positive impacts on both the body and the brain, meaning that just walking regularly can really benefit in terms of brain chemistry. Added to that is the fact that merely being around pets can also have this outcome, meaning that that simple dog walking is a double whammy of immense goodness for your mind! Exercise has been proved to have amazing effects in our brain, stimulating the production of feel-good hormones such as endorphins. Pets have additionally been shown to have this effect, effective for helping to boost our brain’s oxytocin and dopamine levels. This can result in helping the treatment of a range of mental health conditions, such as anxiety and depression. Benefits of walking your dog could enable you to add exercise time.
One of the most prevalent mental illnesses in our country, anxiety is a terrible illness to deal with. But one of the prominent cures is to spend time doing things we really love and therefore taking our minds off the worry. Having a dog is a great anxiety soother, and taking a walk together is even more satisfying. Taking your pup for a walk can be a pleasant chance to get into contact with the world outside our stage of mind, reducing stress, and assisting us to be in the present moment.
Provides a welcome diversion from negative thoughts
Getting out and about with our pets gives a massive entertainment from quiet time, which can contrarily lead to a cycle of negative or anxious thoughts. Think about it—when you are out having fun with your dog, your mind is involved with running, playing, meeting other puppy friends, and of course, picking up some poop. Walking your dog is a pleasure and engaging way to break the cycle of your negative feelings and savor time with your canine best friend.
If you have a social anxiety disorder, then it can be really challenging to deal with the many social issues that we are faced with on a day to day basis. However, walking your pet is a great ‘safe’ social outing, with all the stress and attention taken off you, and laid squarely on your dog. If you’re experiencing any sort of depression, a dog walk can prompt you to leave the house to look after your dog’s essentials. Socializing while walking your dog is a complete win-win for your mental health and your dog. This is an add-on advantage of walking your dog.
While it doesn’t really seem like much, walking your pup for just a short amount of time every day can be amazingly good for you. With benefits such as advanced mental health, encouragement to socialize, and restored confidence, having a dog may be even healthier than eating an apple a day to keep the doctor away. We hope you loved this. If you don’t know how to groom your dog, see our guide here.