When we lived in Calgary I did not see too many people who went for walks. There were people on the trails on nice days but not in the quantities I would expect for a city that size. If I went down by the river I would see a lot of joggers but that was for pure exercise. Now that we have moved to the coast we see a lot more people who like to go for walks. Some even use walking for a mode of transportation which was quite a rare occurrence in young vibrant ‘get there in a hurry’ Calgary. For a lot of people walking is boring, too slow, and too time consuming but in my view walking can be very beneficial. Depending what mood I am in, or who I am walking with, each walk (or hike to make it sound more adventurous) can accomplish something different.
When I need some pure exercise or some reflection I enjoy walking by myself. While I enjoy company there are some types of walks that need to be done alone. Walking by myself is my idea time. What should we have for dinner? Where should we take the family on our next outing? What should my favourite hockey team do to win more games? How can we save the oceans? Most of the ideas for my recent blog entries have been thought up on my solo walks. I love to spend time thinking and when you are walking by yourself in the fresh air it is amazing what great thoughts you can come up with. I just have to be careful to look out for traffic, cliffs, or anything else I may miss in my daydream state. Other times when I am walking by myself I just want to get some exercise and work as hard as I can to get to where I am going to feel like I accomplished something.
Sometimes you want some company and have a conversation you just cannot have with yourself or a 4-year old. It can be difficult to arrange a walk with Lisa or another adult but these can be productive. Unless we set out with the intention for walking a great distance in a short period of time, these walks are usually slower paced then solo walks. The few times Lisa and I get to enjoy a walk together we seem to turn it into a business meeting. While this sounds horrible it is a great opportunity to bounce some of the ideas I have been thinking about on my solo walks. It is hard to have these meaningful conversations at other times as we are usually with the kids or it is the end of the day and are too tired. At other times it is good just to talk about nothing and escape for a while.
As the weather starts to get better we will be taking a lot more family walks. With the age of our kids this activity is less like hiking and more like sheep herding. We do not get to go very far and we cannot enjoy meaningful conversations but these outings can be great as the family can play together, slow down, and just enjoy the moment. A little while back we took the kids on a fun walk and ended up a little further from the car then we expected. Annika was getting a bit grouchy and the twins wanted to be carried. For some odd reason Lisa happened to be carrying some bubble liquid with her which made the kids forget how tired they were as they chased bubbles all the way back to the car. Good times.
I lost only one pound this week but I have a good feeling about this upcoming week. The Grandparents are going to look after the kids for a few days while Lisa and I get to enjoy some of those on-trail meetings. I have a number of shirts and pants that will fit me at the weight I am now approaching. I need some new clothes so I decided it is better to get to a point to make those fit rather than buy new ones. Any reason to avoid shopping is enough incentive for me.