Sustained walking sessions for a minimum period of thirty to sixty minutes a day, five days a week, with the correct walking posture, reduces health risks and has various overall health benefits, such as reducing the chances of cancer, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, anxiety and depression. Life expectancy is also increased even for individuals suffering from obesity or high blood pressure. Walking also increases bone health, especially strengthening the hip bone, and lowering the more harmful low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol, and raises the more useful good high-density lipoprotein (HDL) cholesterol.
Studies have found that walking can also prevent dementia and Alzheimer's.
Running can assist people in losing weight, staying in shape and improving body composition. Running increases your metabolism. Different speeds and distances are appropriate for different individual health and fitness levels. For new runners, it takes time to get into shape. The key is consistency and a slow increase in speed and distance. While running, it is best to pay attention to how one's body feels. If a runner is gasping for breath or feels exhausted while running, it may be beneficial to slow down or try a shorter distance for a few weeks. If a runner feels that the pace or distance is no longer challenging, then the runner may want to speed up or run farther.
Running can also have psychological benefits, as many participants in the sport report feeling an elated, euphoric state, often referred to as a "runner's high". Running is frequently recommended as therapy for people with clinical depression and people coping with addiction. A possible benefit may be the enjoyment of nature and scenery, which also improves psychological well-being.
In animal models, running has been shown to increase the number of newly born neurons within the brain. This finding could have significant implications in aging as well as learning and memory.