These Shoes Were Made For Walkin’

But somehow, my legs are trying to tell me they were NOT. I’m feeling it, I can tell you.

I have begun walking again, because hey, it’s good for me. And besides, you can only get so many spam emails that say “You’re Obese! Stop It!” before you begin to think “hmmmm, a little exercise wouldn’t go amiss right about now…”

It’s really lovely, now that the weather is cooler and not so humid, and the kids are back in school. I love going for walks around the neighbourhood. In the early morning, it’s cool and quiet, but I am so tired. And often, it’s cool when I start out, so I throw on a jacket, but my the time I am halfway done, I’m melting because the temperature warms up. If I go later, the kids are in school so it’s still really quiet, but it’s a little warmer, and there’s a better chance that I’ll have dressed more appropriately. Going early buys me a little more time in my day, but going later is often more enjoyable and is a nice break in my day. So when I go depends on my mood and the weather forecast.

I’m having a hard time with the hour or so that it takes, though. I like to do between 4 and 8 km, depending on the time and my energy level. But to go that far takes at least an hour, and it takes away from the stuff I should be doing around the house, or my blogging. And so I feel like I am shirking my duties a bit. I feel kind of guilty.

But then, the other side of the coin: I enjoy the benefits. I like the quiet time to myself. I feel energized afterwards. And of course, it makes me feel more fit, and hopefully will help me lose some weight. I like to think the benefits outweigh the negatives, but we all know guilt is a big force. And guilt is, as always, in league with laziness… so when the two of them gang up on me, these feet don’t see the pavement. So it’s been a real big deal for me to commit to doing a walk each day.

I always listen to music when I walk. Walking with my iPod on gives me a couple of things to do. The music is good for keeping me from getting bored — which, let’s be honest here, I do REALLY EASILY — and it keeps me distracted from the growing complaints of my sore and tired muscles. But it also pushes me sometimes, too. This morning I had a song on that I played 3 times over, because the beat pushed me to walk a little faster and work a little harder. Music is good for me when I exercise. It has a positive impact.

Because of that, I am not good at walking with other people. I like to concentrate on what I am listening to, and so I am not terribly social. BDH used to walk with me, but he’d be chatting away about this and that, and I’d be completely ignoring him. We both got frustrated. If I don’t have my headphones on, then I can chat till the walk is done. But once the music is on, I’m focused.

I tried running for awhile, and I kept at it for at least a month, every day, but I loathed it. Good doG how I hated it. Always have. Even when I was in the best shape of my life, I found running incredibly boring. And as a mesomorph, built with big muscles made for jumping and power instead of endurance and distance, the strain of running on my joints far outweighs the benefits. Still, I have this bizarre fantasy-world image in my head of some lithe, willowy me (so you know it’s a fantasy) jogging along… Alas. Never going to happen. Not in a bazillion years.

But the walking? Perfect. I can walk for a long time and my joints don’t mind it one bit. I can speed up and get the aerobic benefits I need. And I like it, so I am far less likely to quit.

Well, until it gets really cold, anyway…

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