Yes! I did it! I got my 30-day walking challenge started! I logged 5 miles broken down into 3 different walks. The first walk was 2.5 miles and I did it at the crack of dawn. That left me the rest of the day to squeeze in another 2.5 miles. Simply walking around doing normal daily chores is about a mile, leaving me with another 1.5 miles to walk.
The humidity in Virginia is around 90 percent, so even a slow walk will leave you sweating after an hour. Even though noon is one of the hottest parts of the day, I decided I wanted to take a break from my desk and get some vitamin D. The second walk of the day was around 11 am. The first few minutes were brutal as I adjusted to the heat and humidity. I walked around the perimeter of my yard. The yard is lined with trees, so that provides me with some shade from the hot sun.
My final walk was around five o’clock. I noticed that I still had half a mile to walk. I threw on my headphones and headed out to the yard. I walked back and forth while listening to some of the 80s songs my physical education teacher played during gym class. It was quite fun.
Benefits from my 30-day walking challenge
The best benefit that a 30-day walking challenge is having on me is that I’m staying motivated and consistent about this goal. While that may not translate to weight loss or health benefits right now, I know it will in the long run. I have noticed a few health benefits from simply walking for almost two hours over the past week.
- Better breathing. My nasal passages are clear. There is no congestion and my breathing is light and easy.
- Increased stamina. When I started out, I would tire after a mile or two. Now I feel energized to keep going.
- Improved mood. I’m noticing that fewer things are bothering me. I’m finding that I’m happy while I’m out in nature and walking.
- Stronger muscles. I do think that my leg muscles are getting stronger. The first few days I would feel sore after my walks. The soreness is decreasing and I feel like my legs are stronger.
What I hope to gain
Many people take on these types of challenges for weight loss, but my weight is pretty stable. I do hope to see more improvement from my autoimmune condition. I have lost all of my hair due to Alopecia Universalis. I have started to see some fine arm and leg hairs return. I’m hoping this will continue and they will make an appearance on my head.
I’m hoping that my memory will improve. I’m 46 and noticing that I have more memory issues this year than I have had in the past. Nothing too serious, but just sometimes I’m wondering why the heck did I come into this room? What can you do? Take a walk!
Gaining a greater appreciation for nature and the world around me is something that I would like to accomplish with my 30 days of walking. I’m noticing the birds around me as I walk. I’ve also been able to observe raccoons, foxes, squirrels, and deer in the morning during my walks. It is fun to marvel at the animals that share this world with us.
Finally, I hope to increase my vitamin D levels. Both alopecia and epilepsy are associated with low vitamin D levels. By maintaining normal levels, I hope to improve both conditions.