Tuesday, August 5, 2008

Walking Update

It has been 11 weeks since I started wearing my pedometer. Well, actually, I have to confess: I don't wear it all the time.The original goal was to build up over a period of 12 weeks to walking 10,000 steps a day.

I started out walking that much right off the bat.

Since the goal was to increase our activity, I decided to shoot for an average of around 13,000 steps a day, which would be a small, but meaningful, increase over where I started. With one week to go on our twelve week plan, I have consistently met my goal. I have not had one week when I've dropped below 70,000 steps and most weeks I have been above 80,000. A few weeks even I exceeded 90,000. This past week, I passed the 1,000,000-step mark!!

I know I need to add weight-bearing exercise to my routine and do something about my "core" ... something like Pilates. YUCK! But, with only one week to go I have met and exceeded my goal in the cardio arena. That makes me very proud if for no other reason than I maintained an effort over a period of time. That's something.

In all honesty, I have to confess that the first thing I'm going to do when we finish the twelve weeks is take about three days totally off from walking. I am going to spend a couple of days doing nothing but lying on the couch reading and writing blogs, or drinking beer with DH and watching TV. Don't get me wrong, I love to walk. It makes me happy.

I need to take break, however, so I can return to walking as something I do out of love and for the sheer delight of it, and not for the purpose of accomplishing a goal. For me walking has hitherto been its own reward. My afternoon walk is my payoff for doing what I need to do to get through the day. I want to go back to that. I don't want my afternoon walk to be one more chore I have to accomplish during the day. I'll leave that to the weight training and the Pilates that I know I'll hate anyway.

In the future, I think I shall only wear a pedometer when I am walking someplace I have never been before and, then, only for the purpose of discovering how far the trail is. While it is true that walking with a goal in mind does act as an prod to get out there and shake a leg, it is also true that quantifying my walks has to a degree taken a bit of the joy out of the process....

... or maybe that was just the spate of 90-degree-plus weather interspersed with violent thunderstorms that kept popping up when I was miles from safety.

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