As many of you know, running is my preferred form of cardio exercise. However, there are times when running just doesn't work. Sometimes I want to take my dogs with me, which requires a more leisurely pace (for mailbox sniffing). Other times hubby wants to come along, and he doesn't find the same joy in running that I do. And lately I've been experiencing some pain in my heel, which may be the result of a heel bone spur caused by running too many miles.
So, every once in a while, I walk instead of run. And though I miss the feeling of my feet pounding the pavement, I rest easy knowing that walking is still great exercise. Benefits from walking vary, depending on your pace. Typically I strive for a fairly brisk pace--something that makes conversation possible, but just barely.
Walking burns calories, boosts your cardiovascular health, and builds endurance. As an added benefit, a walk allows me to pay more attention to my neighborhood. I notice the trees, the houses and the people just a little bit more.
Overall, I find walking a great cross-training activity, so I make the effort to include the occasional walk in my exercise program.