This mornings athletic adventures had me out on foot…. and no… not running. I’m still refraining from that.
Walking though does give me that same sense of being out on the road… the preparation and the feel. The excitement of being out and…going…
Mind you, I don’t just stroll like I’m with my grandma…
My walking speed usually throws me into what is a “slow” running pace so needless to say I’m breathing hard, my heart is working and sweat is free flowing which I love.
Chatting with my big kids over the weekend about various athletic adventures my oldest son throws out at me….
“Don’t you ever like just… walk?!?”
Haha that made me laugh, I mean I do, it just seems so tame to me now days compared to you know, running forever, or flying down the road on my bike like a demon.
Not just that.. it’s the miles.. mentally it’s hard to not want to go long….
However, if you’ve read my beginning story, I started off as a walker. I did my “token” 2 miles a day and that was enough. I never envisoned doing more or running or anything like that.
I walked 2 miles and it seemed adequate. And it was… for awhile.
(Side note…. never stay doing the same thing forever. Your body is an amazing and adaptive machine and you stop losing ongoing benefits or changes in your body. Always look to add or change things up in your workouts)
Anyway, obviously my walking mileage did increase and it did eventually turn into running.
You know the biggest reason why? As I mentioned in the beginning, I walk fast. It just became easier to trot along than trying to maintain a constant fast walk pace. When I tried it for awhile and realized the wheels didn’t fall off and running wasn’t so hard, it was just a natural progression to keep increasing my running time to the time I was actually walking.
Great was the day I celebrated I could run a mile without stopping. Of course, after some time, it seemed crazy I could run miles. That my friends, is just disciplined training to get to that point….
The rest is history.
I turned into a lover of running. At the top of the list is the fact it makes me feel so strong and empowered. It shaped me up physically and became a way to clear my head, unwind, let go of the things bothering me and I often do my most creative thinking out on the road.
I get running isn’t for everyone. Heck, even my doctor gives me a hard time about it ( but freely admits he isn’t a runner and doesn’t get the whole “runners high
thing so there’s that….)
Some people want to run and have physical limitations as to why they can’t. Others just don’t want to. Some think they can’t, but the reality is, our bodies are made for that kind of movement and they really can.
It’s just hard and in the beginning people don’t like it ’cause that’s when they realize they are really cardiovascularly out of shape and they hate it. In time though, as those internal muscles are consistently worked out, they get in shape too and you can put out more effort and feel amazing and not like you’re dying 😛
However, if there is one thing that doctors get behind is that anyone, and I mean anyone, can get out and start walking.
Coach potato to athlete, walking has benefits.
If you’ve been sedentary walking is something you can very much taylor to your needs and abilities. You can then add on a little more distance at a time as your body adapts and handles the new stress you’re putting on it. ( this isn’t a bad thing) with consistent effort walking is a great tool to help with weight loss. Just be reasonable in the beginning and set realistic goals for yourself. Having aching muscles from to much over use will only sideline you… and you don’t want that.
As an athlete, it’s a great recovery workout allowing your muscles to work, stretch and move but not overly tax them . I’ve found it helpful after my marathons to just be out stretching my legs to keep any soreness from setting in.
Of course your pace should be brisk, making you breath hard with your heart beating strong too. If you sweat, that’s a total bonus 😉
Walking not only conditions your body but it’s also good mental therapy as well. Not surprising that some articles I’ve read talk about how walking ( or exercise in general) can help reduce depression and negative feelings.
Of course it can… I think exercise is the least under-used drug out there. But that’s just my opinion….
If you are looking for something to get you out the door walking is free and all you really need are a decent pair of supportive shoes and a willingness to explore.
Then the only one who will limit you is well, really, you.