Go for a walk = good for you

By Marilena Aker 21. Mar 2024

Did you know that, among other things, you can learn better, reduce stress, get better sleep, live longer and become happier by going for a walk?!

We hear students say: "I don't have time to work out". We say: "You don't have time not to!"

Using yout body is beneficial for learning and memory to such an extent that, especially during intense studies, a break with physical activity can be crucial for your results.

Take a hike!

– We at SSN are big fans of going for walks, not only to gain better memory, smile more, sleep better, live longer with a stronger heart, but also because walking together is such a nice thing! That is why we are launching our own walking campaign, says Marilena.

See all the routes and read more about the walking campaign here.

Get out!

Motion is good for counteracting stress, sleeping better, getting in better shape and simply living longer. And you don't have to do heavy workouts or long walks all the time either. A 15 minute air ride is sometimes all it takes. You don't have to go on long hikes in the woods or climb mountains to get out. A stroll along the street, perhaps with a stop at a cafe can be just as good for you! Just get out and in motion, take a mental break and appreciate all the good feelings you get in return.

Here are six really good reasons why you should get out and walk:

🧠 1. Positive for the brain and increases learning

Physical activity has immediate positive effects on the brain and thus increases learning. Among other things, it can lead to increased attention, better emotion regulation, improved memory, problem solving, planning and organisational skills. It really sounds too good to be true, but on the other hand, physical activity has zero negative side effects, so why not just test it?

Read more about what physical activity does to the body and mind at Helsenorge.

😰 2. Reduces stress

Periods of high stress, such as exams, often lead to increased production of stress hormones. 15 minutes of walking every day can help! Spending time in nature is especially beneficial. This is because nature experiences reduce the level of the stress hormone cortisol. In some places, health professionals have even started to prescribe nature as medicine!

❤️ 3. Increases your lifespan

Even 15 minutes of walking every day gives you better fitness and can extend your life by up to three years! It is researchers at the National Institute of Health Research in Taiwan who conclude this after studying 416,000 people over a period of 13 years. The results showed that even moderate physical activity for just 15 minutes increases lifespan. See the study from Taiwan on increased longevity.

😴 4. Better sleep

If you manage to go for a short walk more regularly, you will gradually improve your fitness. And better fitness gives you better sleep quality! You get an extra bonus if you go out during the day: daylight helps to regulate our internal biological clock and circadian rhythm, which in turn is beneficial for sleep.

🫀 5. Strengthens your heart

And then it's the heart's turn: if you go off-road, with natural ups and downs, your heart will strengthen. We call this natural interval, and it is like resistance training for the heart. Interval training means that you work at a high intensity for several, short periods. In between the intervals, you must take breaks. You will become short of breath, have an increased heart rate and eventually feel the lactic acid. But don't start off too hard! We recommend that you increase the intensity of the intervals little by little. One example is finding a hill. Walk quickly up the hill (about 2 minutes), before slowly walking back down. Do this five times. Your heart will thank you!

Intervall er best for hjertet – NRK Livsstil – Tips, råd og innsikt.

😁 6. Better mood

Outdoor activities give you fresh air and sunlight. Outdoor activity has been proven to reduce tension, increase energy levels and have a positive effect on mood. A lot of research has been done on just this, and outdoor activity as a treatment is scientifically well documented for, for example, mild depression and anxiety disorders. So go for a walk and be merry!

Find suggestions for walks at your campus

Good for you

This text has received SSN's Good for you stamp, which means that it can contribute to increasing physical and mental health among students.

Read more about the Good for you-concept here.

Marilena Aker, SSNs rådgiver for studentrelasjoner Campus Ringerike

Marilena Aker

Former counsellor student relations, Ringerike