It’s time to remove two words from your fitness lexicon.
These are words that may get used during a conversation with someone about exercise. Typically these would be said if you feel the person you’re talking with is your “exercise superior.” In other words, someone you perceive does “more” than you.
The conversation would go something like this:
Them: “Yeah, I’m at the gym five days a week…about an hour to 90 minutes. I also run marathons and do Crossfit in my spare time. How about you? What do you do to stay fit?”
You: “Oh..I just walk.”
Them: “Really? How far?”
You: “Only (insert whatever you’re doing here…whether it’s number of steps, distance, or time).”
Have you ever had this conversation…or a variation of it? Why is it we feel to use the qualifiers “just” and “only” when talking about walking for fitness? Maybe it’s because walking doesn’t feel like exercise. I think culturally we’ve come to believe that exercise needs to feel like torture…or close to it. I love going for a walk! Don’t you? It’s fun. It’s not torture so it can’t be exercise.
Maybe we use those qualifiers because walking doesn’t feel exclusive. Other forms of exercise attract a much smaller group of people. Everybody walks. But, not everybody runs a marathon.
Walking is not a lesser form of exercise. You accrue long term heath benefits from walking for fitness. You can use walking for weight loss and weight management. Walking helps lower your stress and boost your mood. Your walking also improves your brain power and creativity and drops your chances for cognitive disease later in life.
And, because walking is low impact, you are investing in a fitness activity you can do for a long, long, long time. You’re also less likely to find yourself visiting a sports medicine doctor to fix broken, twisted, or unhappy body parts so you can keep on moving fitness forward…as often happens with high impact exercise.
It’s time to stop apologizing for walking! It’s time to replace the qualifiers, just and only, with two new words.
These are two words that no one can top. Others might go to the gym every day, or cycle every day, or do yoga every day, but they can’t do more than you.
I walk every day.
I don’t know about you, but I’m way more impressed with an exercise commitment kept every day than I am with how much weight is lifted, miles run, or burpees executed. Every day you walk is another link in your fitness chain. Before long, that chain will extend farther than you can see.
That’s your fitness super power…EVERY DAY! And, there’s no need to apologize!
If you’re looking to start building that fitness chain, you’re invited to join me EVERY DAY for a ten-minute walk through the unique podcast, “Walking is Fitness.” I’m actually walking as I record the podcast. You’ll hear the birds, traffic, rain, people saying hi, jets taking off, wind, and even the occasional siren as it passes by.
There’s a new episode every day. It’ll feel like you’re walking with a new friend. Why not give it a try and begin building your exercise super power!
In 2007 when some friends and I went to walk the Portland Marathon in Oregon we met people at the hotel and told them we were doing the Portland Marathon. Their first words were ” You’re running it”. Our first words were “We are only walking it”. I will never say the word “only walking” ever again. No matter how many steps I take I am “A Walker”.