I may be a runner, but go ahead and call me a walker, too.
Honestly, I will not take offense to being called a walker. Some runners shun walking, and may even be ashamed to walk during a run or a race, but not me. After all, walking has served me quite well, even before April 16th.
What's so significant about April 16th? That's when the Outdoor Walking Streak began.
Even though the temps weren't anything too warm yet, I decided to commit to daily walking. Actually, the daily walking wasn't that big of a commitment (since I walk a lot anyways, especially on my non-running days). I wanted to up the ante a bit, and see how many consecutive days I could walk outside.
Thus the Outdoor Walking Streak came to life.
I have always enjoyed walking. Before I became a runner, I did a lot of power walking. I have long legs (and decent-sized feet), so I can walk faster than some can run. That's not meant to be boastful; that's just what I was given. But please, don't be jealous. These long legs make for a very awkward stride when it comes to running (I've seen myself run...it's the polar opposite of graceful LOL).
Walking was my saving grace when I was sidelined three years ago, following my surgery. I'd just finished Grandma's Marathon, so I had a strong endurance base and I didn't want to lose it. Although I was forbidden from running for three months, my surgeon gave me the green light to walk. So, walk I did.
Let me remind you summer is my favorite season. I dearly love summer running and was momentarily heart-broken at the prospect of not lacing up and getting outside. I quickly realized that I could substitute walking for running, so it became a daily ritual. Within a few weeks, I was walking anywhere between 2-5 miles on the daily. I was getting outside, seeing all the sunrises, and maintaining my cardio, strength, and endurance. As a result, my pity party was very short-lived and my rally-back to running went especially smooth a few months later.
In recent years, I have utilized walking as one of my recovery day go-to's. I'm not a daily runner (except for a few weeks each winter when I do the Runner's World Winter Streak), but I am not one to sit idle on the non-running days. Sure, I have numerous other cross-training things to keep me busy, but walking requires no equipment, can be done anywhere (on lunch breaks, for example), and is a great low-impact cardio option.
My appreciation for walking made for a pretty easy walking streak. I'm an early riser, so it wasn't a big deal getting up and out the door before 6:00 most mornings (often times earlier). There were some days where I only walked one mile, but most days had at least a 2-miler at the minimum. Occasional days were blessed with a lunch walk (and chats with blogging gal pals, via FaceTime). Many days also had an evening walk, with the hubby and Max (our dog), as a bonus.
Total miles walked, thus far, has been 268! I should mention that all of these miles were from intentional walks, and they all have been outside (no treadmill time). I don't wear a fitness tracker, so these stats are from actually lacing up and walking on pavement (not from total steps accumulated over the course of a day).
A perk, that I hadn't realized, was that this Streak gave me the opportunity to get a little more mileage out of some of my "older" running shoes. These are shoes that are past their prime for running, but still have some good walking miles left in them. This, in turn, saves the "good" running shoes for actual running.
Anyways, I've made it to 100 days...what's next? Well, I'd like to knock out another 100 days, and I'd like for all of those days to be outside as well. Heck, Milly is in hibernation right now, and I'm perfectly happy to leave her there for the time being. You all remember Milly, right? My nemesis, the treadmill...
So, that's what I'll be celebrating this weekend...100 days of outdoor walking. For some, it's probably not a big deal. I do so much walking, it's just routine for me...but 100 does sound pretty sweet.
Have you ever done a walking streak? Do you utilize walking as a recovery vice? Ever tracked just how many mile you've walked in a week, month, year?
I'm also linking this with Meranda and Lacey for the Friday with Fairytales and Fitness link-up.
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