Walking improves our health

Walking improves our health and cleans our air

We have been very successful in reducing air pollution over the past 20 years, however, air pollution is expected to increase in the future due to predicted hotter days, a growing population, more vehicles on the road and an increase in the kilometers we travel by car. We need to act now and create a better environment for our future. Around a third of the car trips made are less than 3 km and more than half are less than 5 km. Some of these can easily be done on foot or bike. Walking one kilometer at a comfortable pace takes 15 minutes; it’s even faster on a bike! Next time you’re thinking of making a quick trip, why not leave the car at home?

Active Travel‘ like walking and cycling not only improves our health, it also clears our air as it doesn’t generate any emissions. Health experts recommend we get 30 minutes of physical activity each day to help to prevent heart disease, stroke, type II diabetes, cancer, obesity and depression.

By walking and cycling you can incorporate low impact, aerobic exercise into a busy day. An adult weighing 75 kg who does half an hour of medium intensity walking will burn more than 640 kilojoules. That same adult cycling 10 km in half an hour burns more than 1,400 kilojoules. Walking and cycling also lets you experience your local neighbourhood on a whole new level. Rather than being locked away in a car, you’re out and about getting a closer look at local shops and sights and more likely to say hello to your neighbors. Instead of driving out to a major shopping centre, walking or riding down the street means you’re supporting local businesses.

How much is your car costing you?

The Active Travel Mullingar calculator lets you work out how much your car journey costs, what calories you can burn if you leave the car behind and what you can save in CO2 emissions into the environment.