Let me set the scene for you:
1) it’s raining;
2) my husband’s home from work with a terrible cold;
3) the cats are extremely annoyed by all that water falling out of the sky;
4) I’ve got a delicious pile of “Big Nate” books to enjoy;
5) most important of all, my Friday Five blog post is overdue!!
So as you can see, I’ve got a lot of very, very good reasons NOT to go for a walk today!
However — as I just told my husband, who’s arisen from his bed of pain to cough up the *other* lung — I might go out later anyway, if only to the library, a paltry half a mile. Even though it’s raining, I kinda sorta wanna DO it!
That’s what makes walking, as your primary and regular exercise, so appealing, so addictive, and so below the radar as far as some of the more active fitness gurus are concerned. Sure, they’ll concede that walking is “nice,” you know, good for the elderly and the senile. However, as a way to lose weight, they’re the first to point out that walking only burns a few calories compared to their OWN exercise of choice: hoisting a ’57 Buick above their heads.
But let me tell you something that people who walk regularly — if not every day, at least a few days a week — learn pretty quickly: walking is ADDICTIVE! in a way that other, more calorie-burning exercises are not.
And don’t get me wrong — if you enjoy running, weight-lifting, swimming, cycling, etc., then Mazel Tov, I say! Go for it! However, for me, I just find it way easier to put on my comfy shoes, grab a water bottle, and saunter down the block towards whatever adventure may await me, than to do any of those other things.
Walking just seems way more “user-friendly,” if that makes sense. And even though, yeah, on an hourly basis, it does burn fewer calories than those other, more strenuous exercises, I just don’t really want to DO any of those other exercises for more than an hour or two at a time, if that. Whereas I DO want to walk for a long, long time, and every day, if possible! So, ipso facto ergo sum, over time, I’ll burn more calories long-term just walking than I will with any of those other, “better” exercises.
Well, I’ve rambled on enough for this blog/hike … and my hubby and kitties are clamoring for my attention … so I’ll just stop here and give you my unsolicited advice: if you’re looking for the best exercise, take a hike. Yes, even if it’s raining!