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Step Into Wellness: The benefits of walking to work
Step Into Wellness: The benefits of walking to work

Walking to work benefits your health, finances, and more. Explore a "day in the life" enjoying the holistic rewards of being active.

Updated over a week ago

3-minute read

Body check. Are you sitting at the moment? According to the latest research, the answer is likely yes.

Between work and leisure time, US adults spend about 9.5 hours per day sedentary. This leaves little time for physical activity. Yet the risks of a sedentary lifestyle – disease, anxiety, poor sleep – are well-documented.

Moving your body more can improve your integrated well-being. One easy way to get started is walking to work. Walking has physical, mental, environmental, and financial benefits. Here’s what a day in your life might look like as you walk to work.

Improve your physical health

Good morning! You wake up feeling refreshed from quality sleep. As you lace up your walking shoes, you feel good knowing you’re starting your day healthy and active.

Walking to work is an easy way to incorporate more activity into your life and boost your health. Even a moderate pace can:

  • Improve heart health by lowering blood pressure and cholesterol

  • Burn calories and reduce risk of obesity

  • Build stronger muscles and bones

  • Lower risk of chronic diseases like Type 2 diabetes

  • Promote better sleep quality by expending energy

Boost your mood and mental health

The 25-minute walk to the office helps clear your mind and reduce anxiety. By the time you arrive, you feel focused and mentally prepared to take on the day’s challenges.

The fresh air, change of scenery, and gentle exercise benefit your mental health by:

  • Reducing stress, anxiety, and symptoms of depression

  • Boosting mood and energy levels

  • Increasing focus, creativity, and productivity

  • Allowing opportunities for mindfulness and unplugging

  • Creating separation between home and work life

Contribute to sustainability

On your walk to work, you appreciate the quietness of the streets without heavy traffic. The feeling of contributing to environmental sustainability adds a pep to your step.

Choosing to walk instead of drive is a greener choice that:

  • Reduces your personal carbon footprint

  • Eases traffic congestion during peak commuting hours

  • Contributes to quieter, more livable neighborhoods

  • Sets a positive example for sustainable practices

Save money on your commute

As you walk up to your building, you do some mental math. You’re saving a chunk of change by not paying for a parking permit or filling your gas tank every week. You ponder what you’ll splurge on.

Walking to work can improve your financial wellness. You can:

  • Save money on gas, car maintenance, parking, and public transit

  • Qualify for employer incentives or tax breaks

  • Reduce long-term healthcare costs by improving health

Practical tips for aspiring walkers

Ready to start reaping the benefits of walking to work? Here are five steps to get started.

  1. Map routes and determine a reasonable distance based on your fitness level

  2. Choose well-lit paths with sidewalks, crosswalks, and low traffic

  3. Invest in proper walking shoes, breathable clothing, and an ergonomic bag

  4. Prepare for weather with rain/cold gear or lighter layers

  5. Invite coworkers or family for accountability and company

Alternatives for those unable to walk to work

Walking to work might not be doable depending on your location or physical abilities. You can still increase your daily movement by:

  • Parking farther from the building

  • Taking walk or stretch breaks during lunch or between meetings

  • Using stairs instead of elevators

  • Doing chair exercises, yoga, or seated bodyweight movements

  • Conducting one-on-one walking meetings

Staying active looks different for those with disabilities or conditions that limit mobility. Adaptive options can help increase your activity in ways that work for your body.

Walk this way for better health

Walking to work is a simple lifestyle change that pays dividends for your wellbeing. If you can't walk the full distance, look for creative ways to increase your step count during the day.

Our best advice? Don't overthink it. Lace up your shoes and start with a 10-minute walk a few days per week. Your energy levels might surprise you. Small steps add up to big gains when it comes to holistic wellness.

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