That line stuck out to me while reading this New York Times "Opinionator" piece three years ago. The author is referring to the experience of walking on a crowded New York City sidewalk, but I think it describes small-town strolls or quiet hikes equally well. While cycling gives me the rush of moving fast, walking helps me feel rooted and connected.
So why should you go for a walk, right now? Use these five reasons to get on your feet and out the door:
- Improve your mood. We've heard it from the experts for years—regular exercise can help relieve anxiety and stress. While you'll only get that "runner's high" from an intensive cardio workout, a brisk walk around the block can do wonders to relax your muscles, improve your energy level, and boost your confidence.
- Love your body. There are few things more satisfying than feeling a gentle ache in your muscles after a long city walk or a challenging outdoor hike. You're making yourself stronger and healthier, and that's something to be proud of.
- See something new. I've discovered some of my favorite stores, cafés, and parks by taking a new path. If you need to escape your thoughts for a while, new sights can provide a good distraction.
- Take a break. Step away from that bad day at work, that fight with a loved one, or that horrendous case of writer's block. Walk it off, listening to music or taking in the sounds around you. I find that some of my best work comes after a long walk around New York City.
- Go alone or with a friend. Connect with your friends, family, or partner. Relish your alone time by setting your own pace and path. Walking fits almost any situation.