Derval O’Rourke: The health benefits of a daily walk and how to be mindful of others 

Derval O’Rourke: The health benefits of a daily walk and how to be mindful of others 

Healthy Ireland has a great initiative called Get Ireland Walking. On their website, you can see all the walking groups around the country or you can set up your own group

As the days get longer, try to allow a little extra time for outdoor activities

Sat, 19 Feb, 2022 – 19:58

I don’t know about you, but I am loving everything slowly getting back to normal and with summer on the horizon, it’s even better!  There is so much to do and see and outdoor activities can be a lot of fun and beneficial for the body and mind!  Fresh air is such an underrated mood elevator.  When we’re tired, that boost of oxygen wakes us up, after a brisk walk we get that lovely release of serotonin and, of course, a dose of that vitamin D is always a bonus.

I’m already noticing the parks and pathways becoming a little busier, the outdoor workout stations being used and park benches are getting busier by the day.  I think it’s really important that as we change the amount of space we once used, we need to be mindful of other people’s space.  In the excitement, it can be easy to forget ourselves and perhaps not be as considerate of others.  So here are some tips for getting back out there and changing spaces!

In common areas, try to give others their space and remember it will take some time for everyone to feel comfortable outdoors.

Some children have been born into Covid and don’t know anything else. Be patient with smallies who are learning to socialise and see new faces.

If someone is sitting at a park bench or picnic table, it might be nice to check first if they are okay with sharing, still allowing for distance.

Extra time — try to allow a little extra time for outdoor activities.  You may find areas a bit crowded and take a bit longer to navigate through a playground, workout area or walking track.

Smile!  We have spent so long apart, a smile as you pass someone could really make their day.

Resources

One of the nicest ways to enjoy the outdoors is with others. Healthy Ireland has a great initiative called Get Ireland Walking. On their website, you can see all the walking groups around the country and in addition to this you can set up your own group.  If you are looking for new routes to explore, you can find a great database of trails and greenways on the Sport Ireland website — they are graded to suit your ability which is super handy.

Exercise: Take three brisk 20-minute walks this week.

Wellness Tip: Fresh air! When you are out for your walks this week, take note of the changes in nature in your area.

Simple green smoothie

recipe by:Derval O’Rourke

This drink is delicious and a wonderful start to the day

Ingredients

  • 200ml apple juice (not from concentrate)

  • 2 pineapple rings (ideally fresh but from a tin in their own juice will work)

  • 1 small handful of kale or spinach

Method

  1. Remove the hard stalks from the kale.

  2. Pop all the ingredients in a smoothie maker. I own a Nutri-Ninja because it has a really strong motor.

  3. Blitz the ingredients on high for about 20 seconds until the drink is smooth.

  4. Serve straight away.

The best f

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