Walk Don’t Run
Walk don’t run was the name of a popular surf song in the sixties. It was the first song I learned to play on the drums. I happened to think of it the other day while out in-line skating. I was noticing how many people were out jogging when they would have been much better served by walking. Have you ever notice how many joggers are really struggling? Many have bent over bad posture, grimaces on their faces and some even limping along with bandaged knees.
Running has become an obsession for many, in this society of extremes. Over exercising is actually worst for your health than under exercising. Running in particular puts allot of stress on the body especially if you run on concrete or asphalt. Too many miles without enough rest and good nutrition can wear the body down,particularly the joints and prematurely age you. More is definitely not always better.
What about the runners high? Yes it certainly exists, however it seems to be like a drug, you need more and more to be satisfied. The reason so many people feel they need to run so much is to reduce the stress in their lives. Instead of having to relieve stress with a drug of one form or another, how about looking at your life and finding the root cause of your stress. That’s another whole article.
Unless you have healthy joints, are not overweight, run in moderation on dirt, sand, or a running track, I recommend power walking as the best aerobic exercise for most people. Power walking is a term coined by Steve Reeves, the actor who played Hercules. He and I once had a very stimulating conversation about fitness and exercise. Steve and I agreed, exercise is suppose to build your body up, not tear it down. Walking is easy on the body, gives you a good aerobic workout and something you can enjoy all of your life. A walking workout also gives you the opportunity to enjoy the great outdoors and return feeling invigorated, not worn out.
Fitness is supposed to be fun, not torture.
Power walking is about moving at the fastest pace you can, while maintaining good posture and keeping your heart rate in your target zone. You take long strides, landing on your heels, focusing on using the hip muscles. You can walk most everyday by alternating longer, shorter, faster, hill walks etc.
If you really enjoy running and/or playing sports keep running, but do it in a safe, smart manner. For many people, walking not running, might just be a very wise choice.