On these walks
“It is on these walks that my best ideas come to me. It is while walking that difficult clarity emerges. It is while walking that I experience a sense of well-being and connection, and it is in walking that I live most prayerfully.” — Julia Cameron
For several years now, I’ve been walking anywhere from two to five miles per day in pretty much all types of weather. I cannot say enough about the positive changes this has made in my life. My weight, my moods and my ability to stay free of minor illness have all improved.
More importantly, walking has become a vital part of my inner life. While walking, I listen to favorite music or an interesting unabridged audiobook as I take in the beautiful changes of the seasons. On my walks, I have come to know many of my neighbors (and their dogs) and have admired the gardening and decorating talents that enhance my enjoyment of being outdoors.
Even in a more urban setting, the advantages of walking are many. I can stroll to the post office, the grocery store or a number of shops and restaurants, saving gas and getting exercise. The landscaping is maintained to be attractive in each season, and the sidewalks, streetlights and constant presence of people make it easy to walk safely to almost any place I need to go.
I originally began walking when our dog, then 11 years old, began to show signs of failing health. When I saw the remarkable change walking two miles per day made in his energy level and stamina, I was convinced I needed to increase my walking habit for my own health. Now I cannot imagine life without this daily break. It’s the only form of exercise I can stand to keep up for very long.
It does require time — anywhere from 45 minutes to almost two hours, depending on how fast and far I go — but I find that it is time well spent. If you are not already doing so, try taking a walk some sunny day. You might find that you like it as much as I do.
This post was originally published seven years ago today. You can view the original with comments here.