The Joy’s of a Good Walk.
It seems like many people are enjoying going out for their daily walk since being in Lockdown over the past few months, I know I certainly have.
I used to walk the streets a lot as a youngster and before I had a car, walking absolutely everywhere. When I lived in London and when I think of any holiday that I have been on, what comes to mind is how much I have loved exploring places on foot.
It really has been one of the positive things about the pandemic to see everyone out and about on foot, myself included and getting some fresh air, exercise, and outdoor time. It really has been one of my highlights of this year to get out each day and discover new parks, new streets and new cafes.
I must say I haven’t been doing a great deal of exercise compared to what I would normally, but I have consistently walked almost everyday since working from home for close to 6 months. The few times I haven’t I have felt like I had cabin fever, mentally anyway, as it really helps my mind to exercise. The release of all those chemicals when exercising
As mentioned my other forms of exercise have dropped off at the moment. I have been doing a bit of online Yoga and a few other sessions here and there on the Cenr app but my cardio and weights sessions have taken a back seat. I am sure many other people can relate as well, our routines may have changed and so what if we are not not doing as much exercise, it is important just to do whatever supports your wellbeing and give yourself the love and care you deserve as we all navigate the challenges of 2020.
I have been really loving getting back into walking for pleasure and purpose (eg. sneaking in a take away coffee each day), I do love the cafe scene so still getting my little fix daily.
What has been important for me is to listen to my body and mind and not beat myself up about what I may not be doing, which is a pretty easy thing for most of us, but be thankful and appreciative of what we are doing. Exercise is a passion of mine and something I have been doing for decades and is a habit for me, a bit everyday. The reason I keep it up is because of the feeling I have afterwards, both in body and mind and that feeling is my motivation.
Exercise has also evolved for me over the years, I like to try new things and I really listen to my body and what I feel like doing at the time and for me it’s going for a good walk and the joy’s that go with it. For me what is important right now for me is to do the things that help me stay relaxed, calm and connected.
Being out in nature and looking at all the nice houses around my area and visiting the local parks of which I have discovered more of, has been so great and something I have really enjoyed and look forward to each day. Also connecting with the local shop owners and strangers, more about that in social connection and the power of eye contact and these short social interactions towards our well-being. Particularly even more so now we are out less often and wearing masks.
Working with many scholars with expertise in the environment and it’s impact on our health I would often see research about the impacts of green space on our mental health. While I was not one to sit down and read all the research papers, I would often glance at the beginning and the summary’s at the end and the research suggests it is very important to our mental health.
I think I personally have always known this and I can recall such enjoyment from walking through and around beautiful parks and green space particularly in London when I lived there. It was so great to visit the beautiful gardens and green areas usually with my umbrella raised with my friend Rebecca. The weather didn’t stop us getting our green fix and enjoying these different, beautiful and vibrant outdoor spaces each day. Living in a big city I realised as I do now just how important the parks and green spaces and trees and gardens are, and how much I appreciate them.
Walking for exercise is so great and amazing not only for our body but also our brains to release all those amazing chemicals. I havent been out yet today on this Sunday afternoon so I will shortly be heading out to get my fix of green goodness, exercise and hopefully soon more gathering. I hope you are enjoying some of this in your day as well.