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Monday, July 11, 2016

7 Reasons to Add Walking to Your Recovery Plan

We’ve all heard that walking is good for you – especially when it’s a sunny day and you get a nice dose of mood-boosting vitamin D – but do you know how good it is for your recovery and lasting sobriety?

A brisk walk can do wonders when you’re attempting to rebuild a healthy, sober lifestyle and reverse the ill effects of long-term drug or alcohol use.

Here are just a few of the many health benefits of walking: 

Helps your heart. This includes warding off heart disease, increasing your heart rate, lowering blood pressure, and strengthening your ticker, which has likely taken a pounding from drugs or alcohol. 

Shores up your bones. It can stop the loss of bone mass, especially important since alcohol and drug addiction ups your risk for osteoporosis.

Lightens your mood. Walking releases natural painkilling endorphins to the body – one of the emotional benefits of exercise. “Just 10 minutes of walking at the pace you would use if you were late for an appointment — but obviously without that stress of being late — can boost your mood for two hours,” said Robert Thayer, PhD, author of Calm Energy: How People Regulate Mood With Food and Exercise, in a Real Simple interview.

Aids in weight loss. On average, a brisk 30-minute walk burns 200 calories – especially good news if you’re among the 65 percent who will gain weight after rehab.

Strengthens muscles. Walking is a free way to tone your legs, abdominal muscles, and arms (if you pump them as you walk). And the better you look, the better you’ll feel about yourself and ability to stay sober!

Improves sleep. This is especially true if you walk in the a.m.; morning walks have been study-proven to relieve insomnia and encourage deeper sleep.

Helps your body repair damage. Walking increases your breathing rate, which causes oxygen to travel faster through bloodstream. This helps to eliminate toxins, increase your energy levels, and enhance your body’s ability to heal from the damage of addiction.

Get Sober, Get in Shape
The Haven at Pismo works with you to develop a tailor-made fitness program based on your needs, lifestyle preferences, and addiction history. We offer a variety of indoor and outdoor activities that repair the physical and psychological damage caused by drug and alcohol abuse. For more information, call 805-202-3440.