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Fast Walkers Live Up To 15 Years Longer Than Dawdlers, According To Research

Fast Walkers Live Up To 15 Years Longer Than Dawdlers, According To Research

There are two types of people in this world: slow walkers, and fast walkers. If you're a fast walker, you know the frustration of trying to walk down a street filled with the other kind. People are slow! Don't they have places to be, too?

It turns out that as well as being objectively right, those who walk fast will also live longer, according to new university research.

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Fast walkers, who often hit speeds of around 3mph (100 steps a minute) well overtake slow walkers, who trot along at between 1 and 2mph, which is 50 steps a minute.

Credit: Unsplash
Credit: Unsplash

Researchers at Leicester University studied 474,919 people and found that those with the faster pace had a longer life expectancy than slow walkers, regardless of weight.

In fact, underweight individuals who walk slowly had the lowest life expectancy - 64.8 years for men, and 72.4 for women.

Credit: Unsplash
Credit: Unsplash
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The lead author of the study, Professor Tom Yates, said: "The findings suggest that perhaps physical fitness is a better indicator of life expectancy than body mass index."

If you walk slowly, it's even more bad news. The study, which also used data from the UK Biobank, showed that those who dawdle when walking were twice as likely to have a heart-related death as fast walkers. And that even accounts for smoking.

Credit: Unsplash
Credit: Unsplash

The data came from people with an average age of 52 in the UK between 2006 and 2016.

Women who walked quickly had a life expectancy of 86.7 to 87.8 years old, while fast men had a life expectancy of 85.2 to 86.8.

Slow walkers, on the other hand, had a life expectancy of 72.4 for women and 64.8 for men.

The report of course only proves a correlation rather than cause-and-effect, meaning that there's no confirmation walking faster will actually make you live longer, but it does provide another way for doctors to measure your general health.

Featured Image Credit: Unsplash

Topics: Life, Life News, Real, Health

Marianne Eloise

Marianne writes about TV, film and internet culture for Nylon, VICE, The Guardian, Vulture, Time Out and more. She was previously a staff writer at Dazed.

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