Nice bit of serendipity…was searching for Natalie Haynes. due to her classics book (The ancient guide to modern life), and discovered her latest column for the Independent highlighting the Walking works report:
I walk because it’s how I like to commute, and if I don’t, I get sad and I can’t think: my brain works best at 3mph. When it comes to walking, I’m with Kierkegaard.
News around the report, by the Ramblers and Macmillan Cancer Support as part of their Walking for Health programme, highlights the following factoids:
- being physically active decreases the odds of heart problems and stroke; it also makes a difference in other conditions such as type 2 diabetes, Alzheimer’s disease and many cancers
- UK chief medical officers recommend 150 minutes of moderate physical activity each week, enough to make the heart beat faster while still being able to readily have a conversation; includes walking, cycling and gardening
- walking is free – you don’t need gym membership or special shoes
- you can wear everyday clothes so you won’t feel you stand out on the street
- you’re unlikely to get injured
- it’s fun to get together with friends and go for a walk
- walking is the nearest activity to perfect exercise
- aside from boosting your health, walking has positive benefits for the whole community
Cycling isn’t for everyone, and walking isn’t a second class form of it either – can you imagine Kierkegaard on a bike? Some of us prefer to walk, thank you!
Walking is the best way to learn a city…if it means you turn up everywhere with slightly mussed hair and pink cheeks: so be it. Mr Darcy liked Elizabeth when she turned up with muddied hems and glowing skin, and if it’s good enough for him, it’s good enough for the rest of us.