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10 benefits of taking short walks during lunch break

Man taking a walk by the sea
Photo: Alex Duffy/Unsplash
12.30 p.m.
That’s precisely the time I leave my workstation and head to the office cafeteria for a quick lunch. An inconsequential little detail, but I even have my favourite table, not to mention zero waiting time at the microwave. I have been following this ritual on most workdays for nearly a decade, not because I’m a stickler for routine but simply because I like to finish lunch early and utilise the extended respite from work to unwind.
Lunch over, I step outside for a short walk around my office block. If it’s too hot or raining heavily, both of which are annual occurrences in Mumbai, I walk inside the office or climb the stairs. Of course, this is possible only if you work in a large office building with spacious corridors, which I fortunately do.
Occasionally, I also use my lunch break to talk to my colleagues, catch up on news, read a book on my tablet, listen to music on Spotify, solve crosswords or browse products on Amazon, etc.
But, of all the lunch-break activities, I find taking short walks to be the most rejuvenating; though, I can stretch my legs in-between work, too, if I have to. Walking helps clear my mind and find moments of calm, both in the office environment and elsewhere. It has become an essential part of my self-care routine.
Taking short walks during the office lunch break or at other times has numerous tangible benefits:
◼ It stretches your muscles and improves circulation
◼ Reduces the physical strain of sitting for long periods
◼ Lowers stress levels and eases work pressure
◼ Alleviates worry and anxiety
◼ Enhances cognitive function and promotes creativity
◼ Helps build a supportive network in the workplace
◼ Improves social interactions in the office and elsewhere
◼ Motivates you to go back to your desk feeling more energised
◼ Increases productivity and job satisfaction
◼ Boosts your mood and sense of well-being
I have been walking since my adolescent years — to school and back; on little adventures with friends; through college and all my jobs; amidst transport strikes and stormy weather; when I was dating and even now, after thirty-four years of marriage, with my wife by my side. Walking has been a lifeline of sorts. It keeps me anchored and remains an enduring source of comfort and joy.
Sometimes, the journey to mental health and a balanced life can begin with something as mundane as taking short walks during the lunch break.
© Prashant C. Trikannad

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2 comentarios

Walking, especially when you can walk outside, is such a healthy thing to do. Even your vision gets a break when you walk; you aren't staring at your computer or at paperwork, you're looking around at whatever you see. And walking seems to be beneficial at all ages, too. Taking a walk also gets a person away from whatever gossip and office politics there may be at the office.

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Margot, thank you for commenting. You're right about walking for the sake of walking, or walking in the moment, away from the trappings of technology and other everyday distractions. Walking this way is a simple yet powerful way to recharge and clear our minds.

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