Why I Walk

Last week, as I was going for a 3-mile walk as I often do, I started thinking about why I walk.

I've been walking semi-regularly for a little over a year now and I miss it when I don't make it a part of my week. 

  • I walk to to clear my head and stop thinking about my squishy parts. As I get into my mid-40's (I'll be 43 in November) I finding myself getting squishier and the antidepressant I take doesn't help much with that either (definitely helps my mood + my mind). What I know to be true is that walking - or moving my body via yoga or Barre3 - helps minimize the voices in my head who like to regularly chatter about my body. When I don't walk or do some kind of movement I find myself obsessing about it all so much more. I'm also working on embracing those squishy parts - they are a part of my story and a part of who I am right now.  
  • I walk to watch the change of seasons happen right in front of my eyes. I'm lucky to live in an area where we experience distinct seasons and I love walking and capturing that through the lens of my camera. 
  • I walk to listen to podcasts and/or audiobooks. Currently listening to The Feel Good EffectThe DailyPantsuit Politics, Pod Save The PeopleNPR Politics, and MindBodyGreen. I also just started listening to the new season of Serial and recently finished Jessica Turner’s Stretched Too Thin audiobook. 
  • I walk to get out of my house. I love working at home and it works really well for me and my lifestyle overall. That said, sometimes it's really easy to rarely leave the house especially during the times when neither Aaron or I have kids around (we both work from home). Going for a walk helps get me moving (literally) and out of the walls of my home. 
  • I walk, honestly, because it's one of the easiest ways for me to get movement into my day. I just have to walk out the door and move my legs. 
  • I walk to get the opportunity to connect with friends or sometimes chat on the phone with my Mom. Love the opportunity to walk with local friends and catch up and commiserate and support each other.
  • I walk because I genuinely like it and I love getting the chance to breathe the air. 

Do you walk? What do you love about it? 

You can read more posts about my overall wellness journey here. I also have an Instagram account dedicated to this topic where I'm documenting my journey: @ae_wellness

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30 thoughts

  1. mtercha says…
    09/24/2018

    Yes, I walk, a lot. I had a blip with my health a couple years back, an infection left me unable to walk, and it took over 6months to re-learn. I read while I walk, or look around and appreciate my surroundings. I've met some wonderful people (and dogs) on the way. It makes me happy and keeps me grounded. I'm grateful to be walking. Michelle t

    Reply 1 Reply
    1. Thea_m says…
      09/24/2018

      Good wishes on your recovery to health.

  2. Thea_m says…
    09/24/2018

    Walking is the best exercise - it doesn't cost you any money to go for a walk, it can be as aerobic as you can make it, you can do it solo or with family or friends or your dog. We have recently moved to a new suburb and I am enjoying exploring our semi-rural neighbourhood. We take binoculars and are submitting our bird list online to eBird. Today we saw 30 species of birds, I heard a Tusked Frog in the creek, we had a coffee from the coffee caravan outside the community hall, and said hello to a new neighbour. And I almost reached my 10,000 steps. All before breakfast.

    Reply 2 Replies
    1. kellyannlibby says…
      09/24/2018

      so fun!!

    2. mtercha says…
      09/24/2018

      This is really cool!!

  3. katie_rose says…
    09/24/2018

    Yes!! I love walking and walk for many of the same reasons you do. I used to listen to music when I walk but a couple years ago started listening to audio books and it was life changing! I read so much this way and it keeps me motivated on the days I may not want to get out there.

    Reply 1 Reply
    1. kellyannlibby says…
      09/24/2018

      great idea!

  4. MaryJo says…
    09/24/2018

    I started walking for exercise awhile back when I was struggling with IBS and anxiety. The positive health benefits were so huge that I’ve tried to keep it up over the years. Whenever I would go through periods where I didn’t make exercise a priority, I would start feeling sick again. So for me, exercise is not an option. :)

    These days I rotate cardio (walk outdoors or YMCA treadmill and elliptical workouts), yoga and strength training. I either listen to music or podcasts as well walking inside. Indoor workouts I can watch Netflix shows.

    Reply 0 Replies
  5. PoochPatrol says…
    09/24/2018

    I love walking. If the weather is good, it's outdoors. Otherwise on my treadmill. I feel much more energized once I return from my walk. Crazy how expending energy can make you feel like you have more! I don't listen to anything while I walk. It's my chance to unplug from all technology and people and just enjoy the sounds of nature and yes, sometimes traffic.

    Reply 0 Replies
  6. rosegarden says…
    09/24/2018

    Yes I walk. At least 3 miles twice a week with a dear friend. I walk less when I walk our little pomeranian. 3 miles is a lot for his little legs. We do try to walk more than a mile though when we walk together. I walk for all the same reasons you do Ali

    Reply 0 Replies
  7. amandamartig says…
    09/24/2018

    Curious as to WHEN you walk (early vs. late)

    Reply 1 Reply
    1. AliEdwards says…
      09/24/2018

      My preference is early but I will do it when I can.

  8. hgauvin says…
    09/24/2018

    Yes! I walk 3 miles a day for many reasons: 1. To move because moving is good for you; 2. Because, like you, if I don't walk I think about my "squishy" parts (but before this post, I referred to those parts as "wiggly"; 3. Because I can no longer run due to knee issues; and 4. Because I can watch Netflix or listen to podcasts on my phone while I walk on the treadmill. The most important reason is that I don't want to lose my ability to move - ie go up and down stairs and walk long distances and be able to play with my future grandchildren and those are all great reasons.

    Reply 0 Replies
  9. vicki_dalton says…
    09/24/2018

    Yes, I love walking and for some of the same reasons as you.

    1. my health--I started several years ago to help with my Cholesterol.
    2. I enjoy being outside and breathing in some fresh air. My favorite time of year is Fall when the air just seems so clean and crisp! Plus love seeing all the beautiful colors of Fall.
    3. Also to clear my head!
    4. Alot of time I will catch up on some phone calls to friends and family while walking. (I love to multi-task)

    Reply 0 Replies
  10. swimfin says…
    09/24/2018

    I started walking to help with the grief after my parents died, unexpectedly from a car crash. I have continued walking to help fight off depression. I walk to get out of the house and clear my head, to breathe air. I walk to connect with God without all the noise and distraction. I walk to observe creation - birds, caterpillars, wildflowers and so much more. I walk to watch seasons change. I walk because I feel myself and free in those moments.

    Reply 0 Replies
  11. jackieb52 says…
    09/24/2018

    Yes, I have walked for years now. Sometimes more and sometimes less. I love walking my dogs. I live in the Midwest in the country and I also enjoy seeing the change of seasons. It helps calm the worries and stress of working. I have taken some of my best pictures while walking. It is, like yoga, so good for mind, body and soul.

    Reply 0 Replies
  12. paulette1980 says…
    09/24/2018

    I love walking so much my girlfriend & I took 5 weeks & walked 420 km (celebratory, not so much pilgrimage) in Northern Spain for our 60th birthdays! (our husbands did the last 100 with us, lol) I walk for mental health, fitness (along with weight training,yoga,swimming), to let off steam, to socialize with a friend, to set a good example for my grand babies, or just to enjoy the season ( Fall would be my favourite if we weren't Apple Farmers ) Ali, the squishy parts just get squishier but I still love to keep moving!

    Reply 0 Replies
  13. chp97 says…
    09/24/2018

    I have been doing Yoga for the last 2 1/2 years. I totally agree with making health a priority as we get a little older. It helps my mental well being as I struggle with anxiety. Yoga has given me so much that this week I am starting the next step in my journey by taking Yoga Teacher training to teach people like myself who may have never considered Yoga without teachers whom practice body positivity & modifications to make me feel good about my own fitness journey. Can’t wait to see what happens. Thank you for sharing your story with us as it definitely has inspired me at times & given me thoughts to reflect on when I need to get back into the swing of things because you always keep it real when you document you story ❤️ Thank you Ali. You are a true gift in the crazy world we live in. Keep going!

    Reply 0 Replies
  14. SusanB says…
    09/24/2018

    I walk for many of the same reasons you mentioned. It's great for my mental health and it calms my mind. It also gives me a new appreciation for where I live and I find myself noticing details that I'd otherwise overlook.

    Reply 0 Replies
  15. gobluepaula says…
    09/24/2018

    From a Detroit girl; don't get so into your media/conversations that you're not aware of your surroundings. Just always have eyes in the back of your head & be aware of strangers. Sad to say but true no matter where you are!

    Reply 1 Reply
    1. AliEdwards says…
      09/24/2018

      Good reminder!

  16. jocelyn55 says…
    09/24/2018

    I love walking, also! I find that it's the best workout for me because of all of the reasons you mentioned above as well as the fact that it is a workout that lends itself easily to consistency. No fancy gear needed and you set your own pace. I have been ADORING your ae wellness videos "from the road." They always motivate me to throw on some sneakers and get out the door! So thank you! Go, Ali, Go! ;) xoxo jocelyn

    Reply 0 Replies
  17. AnnaMice says…
    09/24/2018

    One of my high school teachers taught us the Latin phrase solvitur ambulando - "it is solved by walking." So many times, getting up and moving has helped me clear my head or find a solution to a problem I just couldn't make headway on while sitting still.

    Reply 1 Reply
    1. AliEdwards says…
      09/25/2018

      Yes, love that.

  18. Vivianna_loves13 says…
    09/25/2018

    Please do more wellness posts. I love them and I love you!

    Reply 0 Replies
  19. Lize says…
    09/25/2018

    I've been in a very good walking routine, and it definitely made me feel energised. But stopped for a couple of reasons. Wanted to type them, but then they all started looking like bad excuses, so I might have to rethink them all...

    Reply 1 Reply
    1. AliEdwards says…
      09/25/2018

      Been there!

  20. janeo8760 says…
    09/25/2018

    Yes I have a 3.5ish mile walk I do. I used to do it very regularly but this summer was too dang hot! I am getting back into it. I too walk for all the same reasons you do (minus the kids). I love see the season change, I like to move my squishy parts too and love to clear my head. I typically listen The ScrapGals but looking for something to add to my lis.

    Reply 0 Replies
  21. mumemade says…
    09/26/2018

    Much of what you have written resonates with my own story Ali. Thank you for sharing as it makes me more willing to embrace my own path and share it also.

    Reply 0 Replies
  22. JoanBoneb says…
    11/07/2018

    You inspired me. I just thought why I stopped walking? It happened not suddenly and that's why I didn't even get how it happened. But after reading this your post I understood I miss it a lot.
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    Reply 0 Replies

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