Sponsor banner

How taking a ‘Hot Girl Walk’ can boost your mental and physical health

Combined ShapeCaption
Hike these 5 beginner-friendly waterfall trails in North Georgia. Video produced by Fiza Pirani/AJC.

You don’t have to be ‘hot,’ or even a girl, to incorporate this TikTok trend into your routine

Access to this AJC content is brought to you by our sponsor, Wellstar

Are you looking to add a bit of pep to your step? Or a way to stir up your fitness routine? This TikTok trend might be the answer you’ve been looking for.

Created by 23-year-old Mia Lind, the Hot Girl Walk is TikTok’s latest craze.

ExploreFeeling stressed? Take a 20-minute ‘nature pill,’ study says

It’s a 4-mile outdoor mindfulness walk, during which you can focus on only three things:

1. What you are grateful for

2. Your goals and how you want to achieve them

3. How hot you are (the inspiration for the name)

@exactlyliketheothergirls

Reply to @666mjcksn666 follow to stay on non-toxic tik tok! There are a lot of new friends so this needed a redo #hotgirlwalk #fitness

♬ original sound - Mia

“You don’t need to be hot, or a girl, in order to do this,” Lind told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. “The whole idea behind this is that everyone … has a hot persona in them. And the Hot Girl Walk is meant to bring that out. It’s really just all about having fun.”

During the pandemic, Lind was stuck at home and — like many people — developed a case of cabin fever. When she realized her neighborhood was a 4-mile loop, she decided to challenge herself. She hated running, however, and instead decided to walk. The confidence she felt after her walk motivated her to turn to TikTok, where she shared her experiences and fitness goals. The trend caught fire and started a worldwide movement on the app.

ExploreFront-line workers find stress relief viewing nature in VR headsets

“It has been a really incredible response that I’ve received. Just looking at numbers I think the hashtag has over 200 million views,” Lind said. “But a lot of the response that’s touched me personally is a lot of anecdotal responses (like) people commenting on my videos or messaging me privately saying like, ‘I got out of bed for the first time in months because I went on a hot girl walk.’”

Benefits of the Hot Girl Walk

“I want to stress that the Hot Girl Walk is not about losing weight. It’s not about anything other than self-empowerment and bringing out the light that’s already inside of you,” Lind said.

Lind also encourages other walkers to listen to music rather than podcasts and challenge yourself to be alone with your thoughts. She even created her own playlist in collaboration with Spotify for other Hot Girl Walkers to use.

Focusing your attention on yourself and your goals is a form of mindfulness and meditation. Positive thinking alone can reduce stress, increase psychological and physical wellbeing, lower rates of depression, and build a greater resistance to illness, according to the Mayo Clinic.

According to verywellfit.org, walking a mile takes an average of 20 minutes if you’re walking at an easy, normal pace. While walking 4 miles might seem daunting, you can do it by devoting an hour a day to your fitness.

Exercise doesn’t need to be complicated for you to get a good workout. Walking can boost your immune function, burn calories, reduce blood sugar, strengthen your heart, build muscle, and extend your life expectancy, according to Healthline.

If you’re finding trouble motivating yourself to walk regularly, you are not alone.

“Not every day is going to be like the most motivating days, and sometimes you have to figure out, ‘Am I justified to have a rest day or am I making an excuse or am I just like giving myself a little bit too much leeway?’”

Lind finds that simply creating a habit and associating the positive feelings you feel with Hot Girl Walking can get you motivated. In times when she feels really unmotivated, sometimes walking to a nearby Starbucks or grabbing herself a treat on the way can help her accomplish her goals.

Combining both the benefits of mindfulness and walking, the Hot Girl Walk is an easy exercise you can incorporate into your daily routine. Here’s how you can modify the walk to fit your schedule.

ExploreHike these 5 beginner-friendly waterfall trails in North Georgia

Modifying the Hot Girl Walk

As record-breaking heat waves hit Georgia, walking outside might not always be feasible for your health. Moving indoors can keep you cool while still getting your daily exercise. You could use the treadmill at your local gym, stroll around the nearest indoor mall, walk around your office building, or walk around the halls of your house.

The Atlanta-based Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends everyone walk at least 10,000 steps a day. With 4 miles already out of the way, you’ll only have 2,000 steps left, which can easily be done through normal, day-to-day tasks.

According to Lind, you don’t have to start out walking 4 miles.

Start small and see what works for you and your schedule first. Before walking, do a few stretches to warm-up. If this is your first time going on a long walk, start with a 20-minute stroll three times a week and then build up the length and consistency.

Explore5 easy hikes to Atlanta's hidden waterfalls

Hot Girl Walking spots in Atlanta

Atlanta is one of the greenest cities in the United States, which means there are plenty of spots for you to walk. There are Hot Girl Walk meetups happening across the country and even in Atlanta. You can make friends while all working together for a common goal.

@kirakcruz

#atlanta girls who want to make friends #atlantagirls #hotgirlwalks @Lucy Nelles amazing idea!!!

♬ original sound - Kira

The perfect length for the Hot Girl Walk, Piedmont Park is a four-mile loop. You can see views of Atlanta’s cityscape and greenery, and walk with other Atlantans while on your journey.

In total, the Beltline is 22 miles. If you tackle a new spot on the Beltline every day you can walk the full length in just a week.

Cascade Springs Nature Reserve offers a retreat from the bustling city life. This 1.9-mile loop takes you through the wilderness, where you can see waterfalls, birds, deer and turtles. You can take the loop twice if you’re looking to do the full Hot Girl Walk.

The Greenway trail around Chastain Park is 4.4 miles long. Maintained by the PATH foundation, the trail offers two loops where you can walk by the golf courses or by an amphitheater and playground.

For more content like this, sign up for the Pulse newsletter here.

About the Author