What isn’t there to love about walking? It’s a great, simple way for you to get out and be active. It costs little to no cash beyond a swell set of sneakers. You can do it alone, with a friend, or with a gigantic group. You can do it outside or inside–so the weather is never a factor. It gets you from place to place without any vehicle. And best of all, it can burn as many calories as a running, as long as you walk a little longer distances.
Like anything you do long enough, pounding the pavement day in and day out can become a bit boring. Before you fret about taking your next step, give these tips a try to add a little wow to your walking routine.
Walk with Purpose: If walking for your own health isn’t enough to get you out the door, then walk for someone else’s health. No matter the season, there is almost always a 5k charity walk benefiting cancer research, disease cures, or even a single family plagued by illness. If a charity walk isn’t available for another month or two, sign up now and start training and raising funds for the big day.
Walk Together:You’re not the only one who needs exercise–everyone does! Make a date with your partner to walk for a longer life together. Start a healthy family tradition and walk
each day after dinner. Skip social media and connect with a friend face-to-face, or foot-to-foot. You can dish about the day as you shed the calories away.
Walk with a Furry Friend: No–not your au naturale friend who refuses to shave, but your dog (or cat, if your feline is up for the fitness). If your pet snoozes the day away waiting for you to return home from work, treat your pal to a brisk walk around the neighborhood.
Walk for a Record: Using a pedometer or stopwatch each day you take a stroll, track your walking progress. Then set weekly goals to beat your previous steps/times. Having something to aim for will keep you motivated when you’re in motion.
Walk the Walk to Talk the Talk: A little friendly banter or competition via Facebook may be just the thing you need to get your friends and family walking as well. Turn your status updates into walking journal entries, and you’ll inspire others to get moving, too–and maybe they’ll do it right next to you.
[adrotate banner=”26″]Walk to Relax: When you can’t seem to shake away a bad day, a walk can do the trick. Try a walking meditation where the goal for your walk is to become mindful of your surroundings. With each step, stay in the moment: What do you hear? What do you smell? What do you see? What do you notice that you may have passed right by in the past? Can’t escape the mental chatter? Just keep focused on each breath and each step.
Walk to a Destination: Walking on a treadmill or around a track can make you feel like a hamster on a wheel. Use your walk instead to get you to and from a place. Instead of a weekly trip to the grocery store in the car, walk each day for a smaller set of items. Or meet a friend for lunch and walk to a local cafe. Once you get there, you have to get back, so it’s twice the amount of steps.
Walk for a Laugh: Walking forward is so yesterday. Want to make other people laugh? Walk backward around the block. You’ll use different muscles–including those smile ones. Yes, you’ll feel silly, but is that really such a bad thing. No.
No matter how you keep the pep in your step, just remember to keep moving! The more your move, the better you’ll feel. So get walking!
How do you like to walk?