What's the Use?

Dec 29

What's the Use?

Yesterday I went for my first walk in ages! The combination of the freezing weather, deep snow, and total lack of motivation have kept me pretty well indoors.  I kept asking myself – well, what’s the use?  It doesn’t really change anything!

I was wrong!!!

As I walked yesterday, I began to think of the benefits of what I was doing. Here’s what that simple 1 hour, 5k walk gave me:

  1. increased circulation which brings nutrients to my cells and removes waste by-products, makes my skin glow and helps me look younger and “fresher” (cheaper than botox!)
  2. Increased my vitamin D uptake through exposing my eyes and (minimal) skin (hey, it’s still -4 here!) to sunlight. This means I’ve lowered my cancer/multiple sclerosis/heart disease risk, increased my bone density, strengthened my immune system, lowered my risk for depression, and released “happy hormones” into my system. Vitamin D also increases the amount of oxygen that my blood transports around your body- and this increases my energy, sharpens my mental capacities, and gives me a real “feel good” factor.
  3. The increased sunlight (I have UV protective prescription glasses, so I rarely wear sunglasses) triggered an increase in the feel-good brain chemical serotonin. Serotonin controls sleep patterns, body temperature and my sex drive, and also lifts my mood and wards off depression. Studies have shown that exposing the body to sunlight or even artificial ultra-violet light- increases the number of white cells in the blood.White cells are the body’s health defence against infections and are important to your immune system’s response to the organisms that cause illness.
  4. I also got some good physical movement in there, obviously, and this means that I am now reaping the benefits of the following:* Reduced risk of premature death
    * Reduced risk of developing and/or dying from heart disease
    * Reduced high blood pressure or the risk of developing high blood pressure
    * Reduced high cholesterol or the risk of developing high cholesterol
    * Reduced risk of developing colon cancer and breast cancer
    * Reduced risk of developing diabetes
    * Reduced or maintained body weight or body fat
    * Built and maintained healthy muscles, bones, and joints
    * Reduced depression and anxiety
    * Improved psychological well-being
    * Enhanced work, recreation, and sport performance
  5. The rhythm of walking, breathing and recitation calms my spirit, gives mental focus, and helps me to cope better with stress.
  6. The recitation of Rosary prayers keeps my mind focused on “things above” and gives me a positive outlook on life. It reminds me of the great truths of the Bible and the promises God has made to me. It also stimulates my brain (as I do these by memory) which helps to ward off brain deterioration. I also did a half hour of “BrainReady” exercises to give my brain an even greater boost while I walked.
  7. I exercised my balance by walking either in deep snow or on slippery ice (contrary to the impression the picture gives this blog post!) Who needs a fitness ball?
  8. I had 1 hour of peace – no one needed me, no phones, no one at the door, no work to get done, no to-do list to check off. I just walked. The time was my own!

Not bad for an hour in the fresh air! Try it! Share your experiences in the comment section below!

Darlene

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