Walking Your Way to Great Health
By now, if you haven’t guessed, I am big on walking as a primary means of exercise and to lose weight fast. Unless you are physically unable to do so, I cannot see any down side to going out for a daily walk. Even if you have to use a cane to walk, it’s much better than sitting at home and filling your mind with mindless television programming, or worse yet, doing nothing.
Exercise Back in the Day
Think about some of the older television programming you used to see, the Westerns. A mom and dad and a few kids tended to the ranch or became farmers. They were out and about tending to their fields or cattle. Now, I realize that was all Hollywood, but I rarely saw someone who needed to go to the gym, something they didn’t even have back then. Why was that? First, there was the Protestant work ethic that taught you to earn your way even if you were eight or ten years old. Farmers of old would have been strung up today because of the new child labor laws. None of these farmers or ranchers were overweight. If anything they were rail thin and in need of some fattening up! In fact, the children had their chores inside and outside the house as well as their homework they needed to finished each day. There were no school buses so they either were home schooled or had to walk miles to get their education.
Now, there were untold hardships for people in that era but the point is they didn’t need to be told to get out and exercise. It was their responsibility as part of the family. The byproduct of them doing their outdoor chores was the constant physical activity. When they came in to eat they were hungry and deserved any food the mom dished out. I don’t think the kids ever complained about the food. Plus the food was all home-cooked.
Then again, would I want to live back in those days with the disease, outhouses, outdoor wells, and abject poverty? Life was tough back then. No way would I want to live then, but they can still teach us valuable lessons about outdoor activity.
I tend to think that in order to adopt walking into your lifestyle, it has to be a habit you make. Of course none of us have time; instead, we have to make time. It starts with one day, and then the next. It’s perfectly fine to miss a day but not more than two. It’s difficult to go back after you’ve missed twice in a row.
The distances you walk should be progressively more difficult. You can accomplish that with only a few steps more each time. Seriously. The longer you walk, the easier it will get the next time you go out. That’s just common sense.
But you say “it’s boring.” Take along your favorite mp3 and or book on tape, and kill two birds with one stone. Or you can just enjoy (or meet) your neighbors and have a greater appreciation for the beauty God has given us.
The important part is, as my runner friend says, “Just go.” How far you go isn’t important. That you go is.