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Walking Wellness: Morning Steps for Sustaining Fitness [Exit: Gymming]

Dog Humor - Canine Walking Images in Outfits
The Background: It has been a strange, though somewhat lovable, affair with morning walk. Honestly, walking on empty roads or green paths hosting the morning, fitness-curious folks wasn’t my first choice. I have always been the squats-deadlift-shoulder press sort of person. Walking seemed too humble, too gentle and perhaps, ineffective. However, I was naive to think so. Rather than Moha or my colleagues helping me understand this truth, it was Life. Throughout 2016-17, I managed to maintain some degree of weight training. The onus was always on getting bigger. Am that kind of a guy – your shoulders should be thick like boulders – squat deep, to the extent that it hurts. The idea of walking seemed to gentle, to innocent and too elderly to make a difference. But I was trying not to get sucked into the gym versus morning walk farce.



Image of Funny Cat Exercising
Things Change, for the BetterHowever, things were changing and I was slow to realize that. We had moved to a new place, much further away from my office. It was setting-up the groundwork for raising a family in the near future and taking total ownership for my lifestyle. Invariably, the journey was tough. My time management was tested and I couldn’t keep-up with the morning lifting regime. Then came bouts of skin allergies, blown-up lips and Jaundice pretty much flattened the momentum. It was time to test something, anything that could keep me saner, more mobile and fit rather than BIG. The result? Trying to walk with good speed!



Early Struggles of Brisk Walking Schedule: the feeling was very different from making gains in the gym. Walking seemed to feminine, even when I saw walk-a-thons and walking races on TV. This was a totally new game for me. I had too much liberty actually. There were no reps to count. There was no one shouting to himself to manage that last blast of power. This seemed far more relaxed but it had a different challenge – keeping your mind abuzz with good thoughts and ensuring the enthusiasm for walking faster, making more ground was never lost. The first 10 days were an eye-opener. I introspected for what could be remarkable morning walk benefits.

This is what I can conclude:
  • More relaxing as the overall pace is gentler
  • Don't allow too many thoughts to enter your mind raising doubts about the entire thing
  • There is some form here too, not as serious as wrong deadlifting can break your back, but it is there
  • There are different levels too – you need to push yourself harder, just like at the gym
  • A day missed is a sin. Once the habit gets to you, it is hard to start the day without that liberating movement
  • Trying-on different sports shoes to find which one was most walking friendly was fun
  • Smallest things, from socks to the inner sole padding, matters – makes a huge difference!
  • Don't need to snack before 45-minute rounds of brisk walking
  • If you are wrapping-up the cycle with climbing 5 – 6 flights of stairs, it is some really good cardio gains

Changing Gym Mindset: honestly, I still miss the grunt of a heavy lift – a feeling too pure to be forgotten. However, morning walks are perhaps nearer to my overall fitness objectives. I have been muscular. I have been skinny, big and medium-built. I can do Deads & Lifts until my back seems to go numb but I cannot run on the track for 15 minutes. Slow jogging bores me and stretching seems to trivial. This meant I was running out of choices. Gymming for real had become difficult. Stair climbing was mostly about burning calories. So, something that was brusque and a bit engaging was sorely missing. Morning walks have filled this void. Largely, I make some walking progress each week. As of now, the walking thing has not begun. By February-end, the wintery feeling would have totally disappeared and then, I plan to restart my schedule. Without wasting precious morning time, I am ensuring that I do free-hand exercises, stretch band stretching, light weights just about 15 lb dumbells, and some dedication that few minutes each morning have to be squeezed...trying to stay regular, real and proactive!!


Things I have tested - WALKING with:
Funn Pic Dog Doing Squats Exercise
  • Fleets with extra inner padding
  • No-sock gear, allowing the feet to be gripped even more
  • Discovering new paths around Dwarka sector 21 – 23
  • Different periods each day, averaging around 45 minutes
  • Music playing in my ear
  • Music playing in my head
  • An emphasis on knocking away the negative thoughts
  • No real plan when to wrap-up, allowing my body to dictate when I should return home
  • On bad days when health seems off but there is some mental resilience to go out and face the demons


I will be following-up on this discussion. January 2018 saw me taking a break from morning walks. February 2018 should be the comeback month for me. Plans include a bit of stair-climbing, some rope stretching and walking…will keep you updated!

1 comment:

  1. The plan for now includes
    - alternating on days to ensure there is no sense of boredom
    - keeping one day for stair climbing and free-hand squats
    - one day for extensive stretching and some pushups
    - mixing these two days
    - to start morning walks, this would be the third option
    - by the time March2018 is over, would love to have started Deadlifts on Saturdays and Sundays!

    ReplyDelete

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