A brand new year has arrived, and everyone is busy making their resolutions. This is a great time to take a good, hard look at ourselves. Is the person looking back at us the True Representation of the fittest, healthiest, and happiest person that we all deserve to be? Going for a daily hike of at least one mile will transform your body inside and out into that much fitter, happier, healthier person! Let’s take a look at how your body will thank you with ALL the benefits you will reap as you take those first steps on the hiking trails of becoming a Brand New You!

A daily one-mile hike will increase your feeling of self-worth, knowing that you are taking major steps in how your body looks, feels, and functions in your daily life. Hiking will also improve your overall strength, balance, and endurance levels.

Hiking a mile or more each day will do wonders for improving your body image. Stop focusing so much on how you perceive your body to look, and instead, realize just what your body is capable of performing. Remember, we are our own biggest critics. Once we decide that we WILL be making a positive change in ourselves, we then need to ease up on any negative feelings directed towards ourselves, and work out those pent-up feelings and frustrations as we hike! Keep up with your progress as your body starts conquering goals in the form of each and every milestone you reach, from the smallest to the largest bits of progress on the trail, and begins to reveal the happier, healthier, and fitter you just lying in wait!



Hiking is an activity that most able-bodied people are able to participate in with no trouble, and very little equipment is needed to get started. I would highly recommend a good pair of hiking boots or shoes, a day pack, and trekking poles.

To find out more on choosing these items, you can take a look at these articles on my website by clicking on the attached links:


“What To Look For In A Pair Of Cold Weather Hiking Boots”  –  https://lets-take-a-hike.com/what-to-look-for…her-hiking-boots/

 “Review – Cascade Mountain Trekking Poles”  –



“Choosing The Perfect Hiking Backpack To Fit Your Needs”  –  https://lets-take-a-hike.com/choosing-the-per…o-fit-your-needs/




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Just remember to start off slow, then gradually increase your speed and distance only when and if you are comfortably ready to do so! As long as we are up and moving, walking or hiking, we are doing something that our bodies will thank us for. It is also a great way to get in the 150 minutes of exercise per week recommended by the American Heart Association.



Just in case you are wondering what the difference in walking and hiking really is, here is an explanation: walking is usually moving on a smooth or fine track without obstacles. Hiking requires a little more effort because you usually move from a lower to a higher point in elevation. Walking is usually considered a leisure, casual activity done in urban environments or on sidewalks or roads. Hiking, on the other hand, is usually performed on trails while surrounding yourself in nature. I will cover this subject in greater depth in a future article. Now, let’s get back to the benefits of a healthier, happier, fitter YOU in 2022!



Just being outside, exposing our bodies to lots of Vitamin D from the sun, is a great benefit in itself. Also, the more Vitamin D we soak up, the more resistant we will be to various types of heart disease and strokes.


Hiking is one of the very best cardio exercises we can take part in. It boosts your heart and lung health tremendously by increasing their abilities to pump blood and nutrients to the rest of your body.

People who tend to lead a sedentary life along with a poor diet are setting themselves up for multiple health issues and diseases, including type 2 diabetes and high blood pressure. Hiking a mile a day will greatly decrease your risk of developing these diseases.

There has been a recent medical study done between hiking and the body’s natural ability to resist developing cancer that was performed by the Macmillon Cancer Support, based in the UK. This study has determined that hiking a mile a day can drastically reduce the chance of developing cancer by as much as 40%. The results of this study alone has me ready and willing to take on those hiking trails!



Most hikes will eventually have us climbing up big hills or mountains, then of course, we will have to come down. This combination workout is one of the greatest benefits of hiking. As we conquer those uphill trails, we will begin to strengthen and build up the muscles in our cores, gluts, quads, hamstrings, and calves. On the downhill trek, we may not be breathing and sweating quite as hard, but we are working our bodies just as strenuously. The downhill journey involves lots of controlled, slow steps to stabilize those hips and knees and will really give us strong, muscular gluts and quads. We will be seeing and feeling the results of a fitter and healthier body in no time!

This now brings us to our “happier” body. As we are motivating ourselves to make changes from our sedentary lifestyles to getting out in nature and hitting the hiking trails, we realize all the diseases we are taking charge over, and preventing them from claiming our bodies. This is a major accomplishment and one that should give us a huge feeling of self-worth!

When we hike in nature, we will feel much less stress, anxiety and worry, and much more happiness and self-esteem. There is something about hiking in nature that releases endorphins, which is known as the “happiness hormone”.

With ALL the amazing benefits that hiking a mile a day can do for us, how can we possibly deprive our bodies of such a simple fix that can deter so many health problems and diseases, and at the same time, give our bodies, minds, and souls a total boost of happiness? Let’s get up, get out, hike that mile a day in nature, and make this year the very best year EVER in transforming ourselves into the fittest, happiest, healthiest person that we all deserve to be!




  1. A great article that is sure to light a fire under anyone who is still thinking up a new years resolution. I look forward to getting out on some walks over the next weeks and months. I really enjoy walking in the lake district in the early parts of the year, especially when the first signs of spring start to emerge.

    I wonder if you could add in some direct links to your accompanying articles, this would make it much easier to navigate through your website from post to post.

    • Hi Danny! 

      Thank you for your comment.  I definitely do want to inspire people to get out and hike in nature, but at the same time, I  want to keep the theme upbeat, happy, and something to look forward to,  instead of a chore.  I am glad you see that!  I am with you – already looking forward to hiking in the spring!!  

      Also, thank you very much for your suggestion about adding links to my article instead of just the titles of the posts.  That is something I have never done before, but thanks to you, those links have been added!  You will have to let me know if this makes an improvement in my post.  I wish you all the best in The New Year!


  2. I will most definitely take a hike, I don’t know about spending the night though. I never use to like taking hikes until only recently, only because my partner forces me to do it haha. Maybe one day we will spend the night. I will be sure to let you know how that goes.

    • Hi Aubin!

      Thank you for your comment!  I am very happy that you are discovering the joys of hiking – even if it was forced on you at first!  There is nothing more peaceful than just taking a hike in the great outdoors, enjoying the solitude and beauty surrounding you! 

      Yes, PLEASE let me know when you and your partner do decide to spend the night – I can’t wait to hear if you enjoy that also!  I absolutely love taking a long hike, then sitting around a campfire late into the night, sleeping in a tent – or lately it has been a hammock! –  and listening to the sounds of nature as the gentle breeze sways the hammock and lulls you into the most peaceful sleep!    I am anxiously waiting to hear back from you, and I wish you and your partner a Very Happy and Blessed New Year!


  3. Great article on the benefits of hiking.  I made it a habit of getting out on the trails every Sunday no matter what the. weather is like.  I’m in Toronto so Winter’s do get a little cold but I just dress up for it and nevertheless enjoy it very much.  For me personally its the connection with nature and as you pointed out, the neuro-chemical release of endorphins that keeps me coming back for more.   It’s peaceful and the closest I can get with my creator aside from meditation.  I want to thank you for this well written article and for what you are doing to inspire and motivate others to get out at their own pace.  Like you said, it’s not about intensity or duration at first.  It’s about starting the habit one little step at a time.  

    • Hi Michael!

      Thank you very much for your comment!  I am so glad that you found my article inspiring and motivating!  That is my greatest desire – to help,  inspire,  and motivate people to get out in this wonderful world of nature and truly appreciate ALL the benefits that are just waiting for us!  

      It is always wonderful to hear from a fellow nature lover and hiker who totally “gets it” as far as the connection with nature, the release of those endorphins, and of course, the closeness we feel with our Creator!  And, I truly admire your dedication to those hikes every Sunday – no matter the weather – way up in Toronto, where I know your winters much be far more intense than here in Kentucky – even though we did just get buried with 8 inches of snow yesterday!  Keep enjoying your hikes, and Happy New Year to you!


  4. This article brims with insight and wisdom. The health benefits of taking a one-mile hike a day are astounding. I agree that hiking does boost your self-esteem and confidence. Getting fit is more about building up your mindset so that your body corresponds to this truth. For instance, when I take nature walks, I feel refreshed and know I can conquer the world by bringing my energy and power to every stride.

    What inspired you to start hiking? Do you think that this is a form of therapy and depression reprieve? Would you recommend taking a hike when vitamin D intake is at its minimum? Any other advice for the uninitiated?

    • Good Morning!  Please forgive the long delay in my response to your comment, but life has really gotten into the way of my website!  I truly do appreciate your kind comment on my post!  I love your remark about “getting fit is building your mindset so your body corresponds to this truth”  –  this is brilliant!!  Yes, hiking does bring you a feeling of empowerment and energy that will stay with you all day, and this feeling affects every aspect of how you handle your day! 

      What inspired me to hike was a painting on my grandparent’s living room wall of a path leading into the forest.  I would gaze into this painting for hours, just imagining all the possibilities of where this path would lead me.  To this day, whenever I see a path leading into the woods, I have this passion to discover where all these paths will take me, and I can’t wait to discover all the beauty that awaits on every single path or trail that I take!  And yes, I definitely think of hiking in nature as a stress and depression reliever, and I feel like nature is the greatest therapist!!  When I leave the house for my hikes in the woods, I actually do tell my husband that I am going for my therapy now!

      As far as hiking on days when Vitamin D is at a minimum, the answer is Yes!  The ultraviolet rays from the sun will still reach us even on cloudy days, and they are at their strongest between the hours of 10 AM to 4 PM.  So you will still get a good dose of Vitamin D even on cloudy days!  Remember to always wear sunscreen to protect yourself.

      My advise to the uninitiated would be to look at hiking in nature not as a chore you have to get done, but as a challenge and a great adventure, which will transform and enrich every aspect of your whole life.  So, start off slow and easy, then take the time to discover the beauty of nature as you set off to see just where this next path will lead you! 

      Thanks again, and have an awesome weekend!


  5. Interesting idea.  That said, I live in suburban Los Angeles, where hiking an hour each day would be difficult to achieve since the LA Basin is pretty flat, and I’d have to drive a bit to even get to any decent trails with elevation gain.

    That said, I try to get my miles in by forcing myself to walk during lunch when at work as part of my daily routine.  

    I also try to take mass transit to/from work, which forces me to walk to and from the train station to either work or my parked car at the other end of the line.

    Anyways, as far as legitimate hikes are concerned, I’ve already done 2 waterfall hikes (New Year’s Eve and New Year’s Day) last weekend though (to take advantage of the rare rain we had gotten much of December).

    Looking to do more hikes, but keeping that 1-mile/day rate for true hikes probably isn’t going to happen for me until I live somewhere closer to the mountains and hills.

    I’m curious.  Where do you live that allows you to hit the trails every day?

    • Good Morning Johnny! 

      Thank you for your comment on my post, and please forgive the long delay, but life has really gotten in the way of my website lately! 

      Well Sir, it sounds like even though you are not able to hike an hour a day in nature, you are still finding ways to take advantage of every bit of hiking/walking that you possibly can in your urban environment, and I truly admire you for all your effort in making hiking part of your daily ritual!  It does sound like you went on 2 amazing hikes – what a way to bring in the New Year!!  I would absolutely love to see any pictures of your hikes to the waterfalls, if you care to share . . .    

      My husband and I are very blessed and fortunate to own 35 wooded acres in the gorgeous rolling hill of Central Kentucky.  We have cut out interconnecting hiking trails throughout the property, so I am able to pick from a variety of many different trails every day – if I start off feeling energetic, then I begin with the ascending trails, but if I need to work into finding that energy, I begin on the descending trails!  Either way, I get at least an hour’s worth of hiking in, which is my daily therapy, and come home totally rejuvenated and refreshed!  I wish everyone who wanted to spend time in nature could have amazing property like this! 

      I do understand that for a lot of people, including  yourself,  who live in urban environments, there is no way you can get to hiking trails every day.  Still, I really admire your conscious decision to include walking/hiking in your daily routine – keep up the good work!  I hope you will get to go for many more hikes to those waterfalls!!!  

      Have an awesome weekend!


  6. I enjoy hiking and looking at different scenery in our beautiful country. There is so much to see, as you indicated in your blog article hiking helps us improve our body image. Hiking helps me clear my mind and relieves stress. When I am trying to think clearly for writing research, hiking helps me think more clearly. I really enjoyed reading your blog post on hiking so much so going to share it with my friends. 

    • Good Morning Jannette!

      Thank you for your kind comment on my post!  Please forgive the long delay, but life has just gotten in the way of my website for a while now . . .   It is always awesome to hear from a fellow hiker who truly “gets it” and understands all the benefits we reap from hiking in nature!  You definitely sound like me in how hiking can improve our body image, gives us a goal of where we are heading, clears our heads, makes us think better, and is great for reducing stress and depression – hiking in nature truly is my greatest therapy!!  

      I am honored that you enjoyed my post and are going to share it with your friends – you have really encouraged and inspired me to keep at it, and I appreciate this very much!  I invite you and your friends to visit my website for past – and many more future posts –  on hiking and camping!

      Thanks again, and I hope you have a wonderful weekend!!



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