Forget coffee: Taking a walk outside may trump that double-shot latte when it comes to revving you up for the rest of your workday, suggests new Australian research.
In the study, employees who took a 30-minute walk at lunchtime felt more enthusiastic and more relaxed in the afternoon than those who didn’t trek outdoors.
“We know that regularly walking can improve your health in the long term, but our finding shows that a single walk can improve positive mood and wellbeing in the moment,” says study author Cecilie Thogersen-Ntoumani, Ph.D.
Plus, when you start to feel better, your likelihood of continuing with the walks—or even other kinds of physical activity—will be greater, she says. So that simple workday stroll can put you on the right path for boosting your overall health.
Your trek isn’t just about putting one foot in front of the other. In fact, the benefits probably have to do with a combination of several factors—like greater levels of self-esteem, improved body image and feelings of strength, as well as positive social interactions you can experience when walking with coworkers, Thogersen-Ntoumani says.
If you can’t swing spending your entire lunch break on the move, even taking a 10-minute walk can make a difference, she says. And teaming up with a friend can help, too.
Walking can rev you up at any time of the day, but afternoon slumpers should try to plan their march around lunch. In the study, people who hoofed it midday experienced an even greater boost than those who walked for the same amount of time in the morning.
Source: Men’s Health