“Distance changes utterly when you take the world on foot. A mile becomes a long way, two miles literally considerable, ten miles whopping, fifty miles at the very limits of conception. The world, you realize, is enormous in a way that only you and a small community of fellow hikers know. Planetary scale is your little secret.
Life takes on a neat simplicity, too. Time ceases to have any meaning. When it is dark, you go to bed, and when it is light again you get up, and everything in between is just in between. It’s quite wonderful, really.” Bill Bryson
When we think about a healthy and balanced lifestyle, we can often overlook the simplest things. To lose weight we head to the ‘Extreme Diet & Weight Loss’ Section of our local bookstore, sifting through the masses of books to find the easiest yet most painful diet possible. To try and get fit, we scroll through the yellow pages for the scariest looking boot camp, pay £4000 to a 6ft 4 ex marine for a 1 week intense program in the hope that they will work a miracle and make us look and feel like Cindy Crawford in a matter of hours. The media perpetuates a ‘look’, a stereotype we as consumers/readers feel we must match. But what is really important, what really matters, is that makes us feel good. Walking is just that. Walking inspires, it makes us take heed, a step back from our crazy lives and has immeasurable health and fitness benefits. What walking does is put us an equal. There is no speed, agility or technique involved. We do it every single day. This is the exercise of the people.
Location has no boundaries when it comes to getting out and walking. If you live in a small hamlet in the countryside, surrounded by beautiful fields, farms and glorious woodland walks, or you live in a built up cityscape. There are guaranteed walking gems to be found no matter your location. There is nothing more enjoyable than heading into a city at dusk, exploring the architecture, the history and breathing in the hustle and bustle. Again, meandering into the countryside, through fields and farms, noticing the changing seasons can be incredibly enriching for both body and mind.
Recent studies have found that 20-25 minutes of walking daily can expand your lifespan by 7 years, and being up on ones feet and not sat down means you boosting your immune system to keep fighting off anything that the world may throw at us. Simply, the more you do, the better you feel!!!!
Walking requires no fancy equipment, no special gear, just a reliable pair of shoes and its FREE! Who knew that one of life’s simplicities can be life changing, for both body and mind! So, make a promise to yourself. Throw on your favourite trainers, play some of your favourite music into your ears, take a deep breath…and walk!