Walk It Out!

WalkerAnxiety? Frustration? Cabin fever? Spring is here and it’s time to walk it out! Excuses for not taking a walk are easy to come by. It’s too cold. It’s too windy. It might rain. I walked yesterday…or one day last week. Yet the benefits of actually tying up those walking shoes and hitting the trail, the sidewalk, or even the track at a school near you, should be enough to overcome the excuses.

According to health experts the benefits of walking even 20-30 minutes a day include: heart health, weight loss, increased respiratory function, increased immunity, a chance for safe socialization outside, and plain old happiness. You feel better physically and emotionally when you have a walking routine (which is easier to stick to if you have a walking buddy). Besides, you don’t need lessons to learn how to walk for exercise, and you can do it almost anywhere.

Dog owners without fenced yards are encouraged by their canines to take walks a couple of times a day at least. Who can resist those big eyes imploring you to come explore the great outdoors with a best friend?women-walking-922122

Once my husband and I were visiting my stepdaughter and her husband. The young couple never cooked at home so my husband was trying to explain how easy it is to throw a variety of ingredients into a wok for a quick and easy meal. Every time he said the word wok, however, their dog would appear in front of him with his leash in his mouth. We soon realized that he thought Jim was saying “walk” not “wok”! Hard to resist for sure.

Physical ailments can impair our ability to walk, of course, which is why I never take a pain-free walk for granted. I once had a heel issue for about two years and couldn’t walk—but gratefully found out I enjoyed swimming laps instead. Toe pain, plantar fasciitis, creaky knees, hips or ankles can all take the joy out of a nice walk, but wanting to get back to walking provides the motivation to work on alleviating the ailments as soon as possible. Start where you are and step out as much as you can.

ShoesIn fact, whatever it is that’s bugging you this spring, go walk it out. It doesn’t matter how far you go or how fast you walk. Need some spiritual guidance? Turn your walk into a prayer walk. Struggling with a problem or relationship? The fresh air alone can clear the cobwebs and give you a clearer perspective by the time you return home.

As I was writing this blog post my husband stuck his head into my office and said, “I’m going for a walk, want to come?” My response was, “Sorry, I have to finish this post on the benefits of walking.” Hmmm… someone needs to follow her own advice. Now that I’m done, I think I’ll go for a walk.

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  1. your huzzband says:

    I always enjoy our walks when all of our joints are cooperating 🙂

  2. Jimmie Bohannon says:

    Good one, perfect walking weather here!

  3. alice scott-ferguson says:

    LOVE this! My favorite exercise, bar none, and like you, Nancy, SO grateful that i still enjoy pain free walking. Whether around the lake and beyond as I relished in Pinetop this weekend ,or the anticipation of more strenuous uphill walks in my beloved Montana,where I will be much of the summer. City walking has been hard for me to get too enthusiastic about, so that’s when the elliptical becomes beneficial as a last resort!! Thanks, as always Nancy, for an on point bulletin for everyday life!

  4. Jan Keller says:

    We have to spell ‘walk’ at our house because we have a canine kiddo that comes alive whenever ‘walk’ or ‘wok’ is uttered! LOL

  5. Phyllis Murphy says:

    Hi Nancy. Again your subject is so perfect for the anticipated spring weather we all are waiting for and you are so right in saying walking is so good for you physically, mentally. emotionally and spiritually. And you don’t need special clothing or special equipment to enjoy a balmy sunny day to decide to take a walk. I have even found it to be fun walking in a warm lightly misty day. Thanks for your wonderful “walking words.”

  6. I grew up in an era when we walked a mile to get to the school bus and/or the bus into town–gravel road and considerable incline. I would never then have thought that, some day, I would walk for pleasure, but I do. Jim and i have hiked in many parts of the world, some in worse terrain (Patagonia, for example) but nothing is better than a leisurely neighborhood stroll.

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