As primary care clinicians, we see the immediate benefits to our patient's health in terms of blood pressure and mood from walking.
In her book, 52 ways to walk by Annabel Street1, she quotes a study2 where just 12 minutes per day of brisk walking is enough to improve the body's biomarkers. She points out that inactivity can make changes in the blood vessels that make starting exercise difficult, so it's important to keep doing it.
I sometimes ask patients to walk to the letterbox, and they invariably go further. The book includes 52 different ways to walk, e.g. backwards, in moderate cold, in water, greeting others with a smile to lift mood, to enable variety in daily walking.
As published in NZ Doctor and Research Review