April is Move More Month Featuring National Walking Day

by Laura Purcell

Did you know Move More Month is celebrated annually starting on April 1?  The goal of this yearly event is in the name itself – to get up and move! You don’t have to start marathon training or pumping iron to reap the benefits of physical activity. Read on to discover how you can incorporate more movement into your daily routine and make the most of Move More Month.

The Importance of Physical Activity

Getting regular physical activity is one of the most important things you can do for your overall health and well-being. Regular exercise can support brain health, a healthy weight, a healthy heart, and strong bones and muscles.1 Getting regular activity can also support your ability to do everyday tasks like climbing stairs, carrying groceries, or playing with your children or grandchildren.

The American Heart Association recommends getting at least 150 minutes per week of moderate-intensity aerobic activity or 75 minutes per week of vigorous activity.2

The Benefits of Walking

Move More Month also includes the celebration of National Walking Day, observed on the first Wednesday of April. This special day serves as a reminder to slip on your sneakers and embark on a walk to promote physical activity and enhance overall well-being. If you’re just starting to introduce exercise into your routine, walking is an excellent choice. With the minimal requirements of appropriate footwear and a safe, enjoyable walking route, it’s a low-impact activity that can seamlessly integrate into your daily life.

>>>>Benefits of Micro Workouts

The benefits of walking are numerous: improved cardiovascular fitness, increased muscle strength, and enhanced mental well-being.3 Whether you prefer a solitary stroll, a walk with a friend, or joining a group, National Walking Day provides the perfect opportunity to kickstart your journey toward a more active lifestyle. 

How to Add Movement Into Your Routine

Adding activity to your life doesn’t have to be a formal endeavor. Whether you prefer short bursts of activity or a continuous session, remember that small amounts of movement add up. Here are some simple ways to stay active throughout your day:

  • Morning Stretches: Begin your day with gentle stretching exercises. Spend a few minutes stretching your arms, legs, and back. It helps wake up your body and improves flexibility.
  • Take the Stairs: Whenever you encounter stairs, opt for them instead of elevators or escalators. Climbing stairs engages your leg muscles and provides a cardiovascular workout.
  • Park Farther: When running errands, intentionally park farther away from the entrance. Those extra steps accumulate over time.
  • Household Chores: Turn everyday tasks into exercise opportunities. Vacuuming, sweeping, and mopping are great ways to keep moving.
  • Gardening: Tending to your garden involves bending, lifting, and stretching. Plus, it’s a relaxing way to connect with nature.
  • Active Commuting: If possible, walk or bike to nearby destinations instead of driving. It’s good for your health and the environment.
  • TV Workouts: Use commercial breaks during TV shows to do quick exercises. Try squats, lunges, or push-ups.

Remember, consistency matters more than intensity. Incorporate these small activities into your daily routine, and you’ll gradually build a healthier lifestyle!

The Takeaway

As the days grow longer and the air turns warmer, it’s the perfect time to embrace movement. Remember, it’s not about the distance covered; it’s about the joy of moving and prioritizing your well-being. Let this Move More Month be your invitation to start anew—a gentle reminder that every small effort counts.

Remember: always check with your healthcare provider before starting a new exercise routine.

  1. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Physical Activity and Health. Accessed March 14, 2024. Available at: https://www.cdc.gov/physicalactivity/basics/pa-health/index.htm.
  2. American Heart Association. AHA Recs for Physical Activity in Adults. Accessed March 14, 2024. Available at: https://www.heart.org/en/healthy-living/fitness/fitness-basics/aha-recs-for-physical-activity-in-adults
  3. Ungvari Z, Fazekas-Pongor V, Csiszar A, Kunutsor SK. The multifaceted benefits of walking for healthy aging: from Blue Zones to molecular mechanisms. Geroscience. 2023 Dec;45(6):3211-3239. doi: 10.1007/s11357-023-00873-8. Epub 2023 Jul 26. PMID: 37495893; PMCID: PMC10643563.