Where, why and when to go walking often need a bit of research to find walks that suits you. We’ll provide you with information and share some ideas with you to help you make the right choice. How to go and why go walking may take a bit of encouragement which we’d first like to expand upon.
We spend the early part of our life learning how to walk. You get the determination to stand on your feet and put yourself through numerous bumps and falls to master the skill of putting one foot in front of the other. Was it instinct or did you have a motive to walk. Did you fathom out that it was going to be easier to walk to fetch a toy rather than crawl. And did you play the progress game when reaching the toy only to find next time it’s further away. It may have presented with a challenge but I bet you made progress!
It’s a shame that later in life we do the opposite and do so much sitting down! Driving a car, working in an office, watching TV, playing computer games. Perhaps we lose the determination and motivation or it might be that we forget how walking can lead to greater things in life. You spend a few years exploring your surroundings and building strong and healthy bones as you grow. Therefore as you age it makes sense to maintain your health and well-being by continuing to explore and exercise.
Walking enables you to meet people and to see places of interest. It satisfies your sense of curiosity and your given need to socialise. We believe that the best way to see the World is on foot. Walking puts you up close and personal to people, wildlife and plants. Also it maximises your ability to get in to places and terrain that are not accessible by other means. Other forms of transport may be quicker but walking opens up a wider choice of places to visit, and it is cheaper on your pocket.
You will have your own preferred speed of walking, adjusting it according to the time available and the environment you’re moving through. Your pace will change if for example you are walking up-hill or if it starts raining! The best thing about walking for leisure is that you can set your own time, choose a destination and move at your own pace.
So for those of you just starting out walking, those of you who need to refresh your aspirations and enthusiasts needing new ideas here are some
Types of walk to consider.
Explore the culture, heritage and landscapes of the countryside and beautiful towns and villages by combining walking with sightseeing. Gentle pace, uncovering views and places of interest. More than discovery, enable you to immerse yourself in the local culture, history and landscapes. Nothing too strenuous unless you want to join a Challenge Walk to raise money for charity.
As well as leisure walks there a few varieties and types of walking :-
Hill walking, hiking or tramping
tend to be longish walks involving hills
often long distances, usually high and/or wild places, and with a backpack
Walking in snow requires specialised foot gear and a different gait.
A sport using special designed walking poles and a technique that uses more of your body which can result in greater fitness.
Race or Power walking
a.k.a. Speed walking and/or long-distance walking for sport rather than leisure.
if you want to improve fitness and don’t mind staying in the same place all the time!
These deserves a special mention. Health and medical professionals have increasingly recognised the benefits of walking to the health and well-being of individuals. Benefits such as :-
- burning calories
- good for your heart and lungs
- strengthens muscles, bone and joints
- improves your mood and boosts confidence
- helps to maintain flexibility and co-ordination
Consequently many health organisations and local authorities have developed programmes of walks for health. So much so that there is now a movement trying to get doctors to prescribe walks. There are websites providing information to help and encourage you to take up walking or another activity. At Nature’s Pace we advocate that individuals should be responsible for their own health and well-being and we want to provide support. Health Walks are work-in-progress for our website and we will expand on this aspect in future posts. In the meantime if you have any questions about how to start walking or walking in general please drop us an email or use the form on the Contact page.
Nature’s Pace will cover leisure walks in the main but don’t be surprised if we wander off down the other paths from time to time. Walking is a complex and interesting subject. You will find lots of information in books or on the web. We don’t intend to be a directory of different walks or to be a review website of equipment and gear. However we will tell you about our experiences. When necessary we will point you in the right direction for walking routes and reviews.
Nature’s Pace will help you to improve your walking knowledge and to sharpen your senses to places, people and nature. We will answer any question you have about walking especially if it encourages you to rekindle your determination and motivation to start your journey. Contact us or sign-up to our mailing list.