Take a walk and beat autumn blues
Two men hiking

Physical inactivity is one of the world’s biggest health crises, but you don’t have to focus on HIIT classes or train for an Ironman to live a healthy life – take a walk

Consider that 5.3 million people die prematurely due to a lack of activity, compared to 5 million from smoking worldwide, suggests research from medical journal The Lancet. In the digital age, when technology has facilitated longer working hours in and out off the office, exercise has taken the backseat.

Benefits of Walking

Dr Andrew Murray, Ambassador with Merrell UK, NHS Inform, and researcher with the University of Edinburgh said: ‘Just 30 minutes of walking five times per week can you feel better, happier and less anxious. Research shows that those who walk regularly live on average seven years longer than those who don’t.

‘Regular walkers are shown to be more productive at work and smart companies conduct walking meetings, allow exercise breaks and consequently see the benefits. Employees who are physically active are also less likely to take sick days, so it’s a no brainer.’

As the nights begin to draw in and healthy doses of daylight become more important for wellbeing, here are five ways in which to ace a walking meeting:

Discuss ideas
Our level of creativity increases by up to 60% when walking. So take a stroll and have a brainstorm with a colleague, don’t be surprised if you have a lightbulb moment even Don Draper would be proud of.

Set a destination
Have a route or destination planned before setting off, walking aimlessly can prove to be a distraction and a waste of time. Walk at your own pace, going as far as time allows. Why not suggest a walking lunch meeting instead of a working lunch meeting next time you send a diary invite.

Keep it casual
Walking meetings are a great way to overcome the organisational hierarchy between managers and employees. Walking meetings are more informal by their very nature, so they present a great opportunity tear down barriers and build healthy working relationships.

Get active
Even just five minutes of exercise has been proven to boost mood and sense of wellbeing. Even if you’re time poor day-to-day, everyone can spare five minutes of their day for the benefit of their health.

Get the gear
Take a pair of comfortable walking shoes to work every day is simple, yet sensible. Walking in a pair of smart office shoes isn’t good for your feet or your wallet so invest in appropriate footwear. Whatever the weather throws at you in autumn and winter, there are no excuses not to get out of the office.

Shop walking shoes ideal for walking meetings at Merrell UK.