Isn’t walking meant to be good for you?

The benefits of regular walking have frequently been studied and are well documented. But note the word ‘regular’, and this makes a world of difference between the different walkers we encounter on Yr Wyddfa.

From the standpoint of fitness alone, this accounts for why, to some, their day on the mountain is just another walk, and nothing too demanding, yet to others it is massively challenging. It’s not hard to regularly overhear people who genuinely think they are dying, who have never felt such pain in their legs/calves/thighs/lungs before, and who swear that they will never do anything like this again! I recently overheard one woman, as she approached the summit, declare that she was now “mentally scarred for life”!

The mountain is no respecter of age either; fitness has little to do with age. I personally know many people who later on in life have found levels of fitness they never experienced when younger. It’s an obvious fact that walking helps to tone and strengthen your muscles.

Those who tackle Yr Wyddfa who aren’t regular walkers won’t have experienced the many other benefits that regular walking brings; in fact, a one-off walk up the mountain isn’t really likely to bring any of these benefits, and many first-timers will find that afterwards they feel a lot worse both physically and mentally!

Let’s have a look at some of the benefits of regular walking:

    • Regular walking reduces stress. It’s a great way to forget about the issues of daily life. Moreover, endorphins produced by exercising help to improve your mood.
    • It boosts your brainpower.
    • You’ll likely see and discover discover new places.
    • It’s sociable when you walk with others (regular walkers have no trouble talking even while walking up mountains), and the time will pass faster if you’re not alone.
    • Regular walking helps maintain a healthy weight by burning calories.
    • Regular walking lowers blood pressure and can also help prevent high blood pressure. This helps to lower your risk of heart problems in the future.
    • It increases energy levels (though it may not always feel like that!) In the long term, keeping active can boost your energy and help you feel less tired.
    • It stimulates your digestive system.
    • It delays the onset of varicose veins.
    • It alleviates joint pain (so long as you don’t overdo it).
    • It reduces the risk of chronic diseases.
    • You’ll likely improve the quality of your sleep.
    • It’ll help you live longer because you’re altogether fitter.
    • It might even save you money! After all, while you’re spending hours walking, you’re not spending money, and it’s certainly cheaper than going to the gym! And nor are you leaving much of a carbon footprint, so you’re helping save the planet. (OK, we’ll overlook your journey to get here.)
    • If you can achieve targets by walking, it’ll make other goals seem more attainable.

As we said above, this isn’t going to happen overnight, or after just one mountain walk! But if you see people who are finding walking up Yr Wyddfa a total breeze when you aren’t, this might be why.

Back to the top

Back to the blog menu

Back to the home page