Walking is the most natural sport we have, and when done well can transform our lives. Here’s how to live the way of the walker.
In traditional Japanese culture even everyday activities like making tea can become transformative. Whether it’s the tea ceremony, the art of flower arrangement, tidying up or the various martial arts, all them became a “dō”, or “dao” in Chinese, meaning “way” in English. Each is a path to explore and develop ourselves.
Walking is no different, and might be considered one of the very first ways we had. In this series we will explore and develop the way of the walker. One footstep at a time, we learn to love this most ancient of ways. Each article will include tips and tasks to help you enjoy walking even more than you already do.
Losing the wheels
“Walking takes longer … than any other known form of locomotion except crawling. Thus it stretches time and prolongs life. Life is already too short to waste on speed.” – Edward Abbey
Recently, my bicycle was stolen. Initially, I was upset; it got me around town quickly, eliminating the need for public transport. Rather than dwell on it and complain, I decided to embrace walking. Now, in retrospect, losing my bicycle was a good thing.
Even with only a bicycle, it’s easy to rush, to speed, to get from A to B in a flash. When I embraced walking, I found this isn’t really possible. Walking demands I slow down and leave plenty of time. This allows me to relax more and enjoy the journey.
The best part of your day
Walking can be an activity that sets a rhythm in our lives, something we come back to regularly to relax, reset and let go of our stress and worries. It also keeps us healthy, helps us to discover more about our town or city and inspires our most creative thinking. It’s a wonderful way to get a fresh perspective on whatever problems or challenges we are facing.
If you’re not already a fully committed walker, I invite you to lock up your bicycle, or park your car, and for the next five weeks make walking your main form of locomotion.
If you haven’t already, install the Sports Tracker app, start walking as much as possible, and monitor your progress as the weeks progress. My bet is that by the end of this five week series, your daily walks become something you really look forward to.
Try to walk at least 20 km this week. That’s just under 3000 steps a day over seven days. Easy enough, right? Get walking!
Josh Gale – Kiwi journalist tracking adventures great and small