I think that I cannot preserve my health and spirits unless I spend four hours a day at least  and it is commonly more than that  sauntering through the woods and over the hills and fields absolutely free from all wordly engagements.

~Henry David Thoreau

I started walking again about 5-6 weeks ago. I had been a sporadic walker for the last 5 years. When I lived in Charleston, I was a more consistent walker, as the Battery was a beautiful place to walk and I had a few other women with whom to walk. I also didn’t have any kids.

I got away from walking when life got hectic. I also stopped walking when time exercising seemed selfish. I also stopped exercising when I was more interested in sitting like a bump on a log, vegged out in front of mind numbing television. Interested is a liberal adjective for indifference and apathy.

I walk from my office complex to the local community college. I make a few laps around the track and then I walk back. In all, it takes about 40 minutes. I have noticed my pace and the fluidity of movement have improved considerably. I feel at times I could slip into jogging. I resist this urge, as I have no place running. I was once an avid runner through college. I also torn up my knee the summer between freshman and sophomore year. This was in the time before MRI scans. I am sure my mom recalls the arthrogram I had on my knee that summer. The orthopedist assured us that the CO2 and dye they injected in my knee would resorb in a few hours…..4 days later it still sounded like a balloon with 5 tbsp of water sloshing around in it. A testament to an intact knee joint! Now, my right knee has a major cringe factor: it grinds like is is filled with gravel from the bottom of a fish tank. Running is a bad choice.

So I walk. I walk with my iPod plugged into my ears. I listen to podcasts like NPR books or NPR music. I make playlists. I walk on a sidewalk. I walk and notice STUFF. I walk and let things go. I walk and pray. I walk partly for exercise and fitness. I also walk to simply walk. Henry David Thoreau called it sauntering.

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