I’ve always loved to walk. I enjoy walking with others, if we can match our pace, but mostly I love to walk alone. I’ve done it since I was old enough to venture out on my own. Growing up I often walked in large, peaceful, tree-filled cemetery. If I’m at the beach I prefer a walk to lying on a towel. Although sitting in a chair to people watch is fun too. Walking is a great way to think or not. To listen to nature’s conversation-the wind, the leaves, the birds.
I was a runner/jogger for years beginning in grad school when I found it a great way to combat stress. George Sheehan’s book, On Running and Being was popular at that time. Later with work and a family, running was a great way to get in a quick exercise when life was busy. I still preferred outside to a treadmill or the indoor track at the Y. Many of my story idea seeds in those years grew when I was running.
In recent years I’ve gone back to walking after these old knees and hips protested. I love to walk early. Not many cars or people and the chance to see a sunrise during the walk.
Our children get most of their exercise these days in organized sports. I wish they had more time to be alone with their thoughts. Time to listen to nature instead of the electronic voices that follow us everywhere. Time to hear their own inner voice.
It’s Exercise with a Child Week. Please consider talking your child on a walk. Model listening to nature, and being content with silence, quietly point out the beauty, admire the vastness of the sky and the intricacies of clouds. Maybe you’ll find something interesting that tickles the imagination. Maybe stories will start to grow.
One day I saw something that made me ask What If! I went back to snap a picture. The ideas are sprouting!!