Tuesday, December 30, 2008


Years ago, before I was a walker, there was a woman who dressed up in a costume every day and walked on the busiest street in my neighborhood. She would stop at red lights and dance in circles. She would wave at every passing car. She danced, walked, hopped and generally had a good time. Was she crazy? No! She was getting healthy.

The local 'journal' newspaper took notice of this woman - who couldn't - and wrote an article about her. She identified herself only as 'Tiger', the most frequent of her many costumes. Her story was inspiring. She was an R.N. who had developed a 'terminal illness' and knew what the future held for her. Apparently, there was no cure for her illness and little available treatment.

She devised her own health regimen which centered around walking and eating well. She long outlived the physician's prognosis. She decided that she would enjoy every day as tho' it was her last day. She would walk and dance fearlessly. FEARLESSLY. That means 'without fear'.

Wow! I wanted to live that way. I wanted to have what she had. No, not her terminal illness. But her attitude.

She was unable to keep a full time job and I have since lost track of her as I moved away. But, Tiger's story remains with me. Her 'treatment' consisted of eating well and WALKING!! And, that allowed her to live, healthy and fearless, for long after she was predicted to by medical specialists.

Take heed. Imagine how we could improve our lives merely by walking and eating well. If Tiger could add years and quality to her life in the face of a terminal illness, what benefit might we attain if we need only to get off our posteriors and stop eating junk food? I became willing to learn what might be in store for me if I followed Tiger's lead.

So, fearlessly, I walk every day. Walk with me!!

Monday, December 29, 2008


Who's in charge of YOUR life? Kids, boss, husband, wife, mom, dad? Some days it feels like all of them, right?

I have discovered FREEDOM! I have discovered that when the world about me is going crazy, I can remove myself from it all - all the craziness, the insanity, the tension, the concerns, the politics, the arguments, the money problems, everything. How, you ask?

I put on my walking shoes and head out the door or into a bedroom and lock the door!

So simple but not always so easy. It took me many years to figure out that I was not only able to do this - but also that I didn't need anyone's permission to do it.

Now, everyone in my home and office accepts that there are times when I'll disappear or lock myself away for a while and they better not interfere. There's not much I can do to deter them from interfering. Mostly, I just ignore. When I get my mind set on going for a walk, for whatever reason, I just go.

What about YOU! Can you just remove yourself for 10-15 minutes from whatever is going on around you? Well, yeah.

Legally, we are allowed a 15 minute 'break' in every 4 hours of work (in the workplace - not at home!). We get a lunch 'hour' (an hour which is often just 15 minutes long).

Further, it is not written in granite that dinner must be on the table at 6:00 PM. 6:15 will work. I promise. Time to go to bed or arise in the morning are flexible for most people. Can you afford the 15 minutes each day? Walking just 15 minutes before going to bed is probably not a good idea. It is likely to rev you up a bit much rather than settle your body down. So, in the morning, arising 15 minutes early is likely to be a reasonable solution. Try it for a week or two, especially if you can really not find those 15 minutes at any other time in your day.

I'm NOT a 'morning person'. But even for me, arising 15 minutes earlier than I must would not be a hardship. Might not be my first choice - but not a hardship.

If I'm the boss of me, I get to determine when I take my walk. Even if I already walked my 15 minutes this morning, if the boss is getting to me, I'm likely to lace up my walking shoes and take my mind and body outside for an AA during my lunch 'hour'. Bonus - I get in 30 minutes rather than 15. Twice the bang for my buck!

This is a no lose situation. You just have to take the action. Here's one way to assure you can put the plan into action - ALWAYS HAVE YOUR WALKING SHOES HANDY. If you do most of your walking from home, put your old shoes in your trunk or desk drawer, along with a cushy pair of socks. As your walking increases, you'll find more ways to fit in your walk and your AA.
You can't go wrong with this plan. I promise.

Saturday, December 27, 2008


How will you know where you stand in the Walking Diva's Endurance Chart? The Walking Diva is ME! I have developed a category of walkers from my own experience and a bit of research. These are guidelines - just that. Not written in granite. Not handed down from the Mayo Clinic. Just guidelines.

Beginners - people who have no walking routine at all. People who walk no farther than from the sofa to the kitchen. People with arthritis, fibromyalgia, joint or muscle pain, heart disease, diabetes, or other physical impairment that slows them down, causes pain, or makes walking difficult, painful, or uncomfortable. The initial goal for these individuals is 10 minutes a day in increments of 60-90 seconds each. This will work for people who use scooters to get around. This will work for people who WILL NOT walk unless they absolutely must and only do so to meet their minimal activities of daily life (ADL).

Steppers - people who can comfortably walk around their homes and from their cars to the grocery store or other location. These are not people who will usually walk for other purposes but they are not physically limited from walking for 10 minutes a day. Their goal will be to walk 15 minutes a day in increments from 90 seconds to 3 minutes. Many will have jobs, full or part time, and may have other health issues but nothing that confines them to sofa or scooter.

Striders - people who are able to walk with no difficulty for 15 to 20 minutes each day in their ADL. Typically, these people participate in NO other form of physical activity, either for fun or health benefit. But, they suffer no physical impairment to walking.

Strutters - people who are easily able to walk for 20 or more minutes per day in their ADL and who maybe unmotivated to walk farther for their health.

Champions - people who easily walk for 30 or more minutes per day in their ADL, who have no physical impediment to walking longer, but who may be unmotivated to walk farther for their health.

So, where are you in this scheme? Maybe you don't fit exactly into any of these categories. That's fine. These are just guidelines and you should begin where you are comfortable. If you are confined, either by your physician or yourself, to your chair or scooter, this is the perfect plan for you. You have nothing to lose. It gets easier every day. You don't need a doctor's order (although you may feel free to consult your physician to reassure yourself).

Again, I guarantee you'll feel better in a couple of weeks.

Monday, December 22, 2008


Why am I excited today?? It was sunny and not too cold, but I couldn't walk outside. I have any number of Leslie Sansone's Walking tapes/DVD's that I use on days when I can't walk outside. I have several that I haven't gotten around to viewing because I'm far more likely to walk outside or at the mall than I am to walk around my family room these days. But, today, the family room was the scene of my walk.

Nothing too exciting there. Here's what's exciting - Sansone's 'Walk 4 Miles' tape has a bunch of NEW steps on it!! Why did I wait so long to view this tape. Well, one reason is that it's a 4 mile walk -farther than I usually walk. Today, I reached for this one because I have loaned out several of my tapes and this one was at the top of the stack. It's a VHS version, so may not be readily available in that format. But, even if you can't find this exact tape/DVD, I feel sure another of her programs will incorporate these new steps.

In addition to new steps, there were new upper body movements!! I was so pumped. It can get boring if you watch or do the same thing over and over. Sansone is aware of that. She's a high energy, encouraging walker - but always speaks to the beginner who might be using her program. There's always the opportunity to back off her pace, work at a slower intensity, but keep up your heart rate - the key to aerobic training.

So, although I had no intention of walking 4 miles - and didn't walk that far - I learned a bunch of new maneuvers and was rejuvenated! Now, I can incorporate some of these new moves into my regular walks. So can you - even if you're still at the snippets stage - those few minutes of walking during TV commercials or your few minutes outdoors. No reason all of us, at every stage, can't take advantage of Sansone's experience and energetic approach.

Without giving away her 'secrets', let me tell you that she has incorporated some new footwork that includes new sidesteps, a 'jazz box', some punches, and double knee lifts. You might be able to learn these without viewing her program, but you'll make greater progress much more quickly if you let Sansone teach you the steps. This is not dance steps to memorize. She coaches you at, literally, every step of the way. Check it out!

Remember my 100% GUARANTEE. Should you decide to stop walking and resume your old habits, I personally guarantee that you'll get back 100% of your former life - your pain, your lifestyle, your attitude.

Sunday, December 21, 2008


Lest you think I'm just an old lady who can't keep up, so I walk instead, let me tell you what happened today. Yesterday, I wrote about walking to a new to me Leslie Sansone tape. Well, today, by the time I returned home from work, it was too dark to walk outside, so I popped in the same Leslie Sansone tape, cued to the second section. My 24 year old son was in the kitchen, so I challenged him to walk along with me.

Now, this is not all walking, as I've described. My son and I had to follow Leslie's lead on the new section since there were even more new movements that I hadn't seen before. Everything was new to my son except the actual walking. My son is about 6'3" to my 5'2.5". There was a time when I was 5'4" but those days are gone too. More on that another day.

My son lived in Washington, DC til recently, so he was used to walking miles every day, using the subway system there to avoid having to use a car. Since moving back to St. Louis in late September, he has been fairly sedentary. So, it was funny to see him marching in place, doing knee lifts so high that they were up to my shoulder, and trying to figure out the side steps because they're doing them in reverse on the TV screen (not a problem for me). I laughed out loud at him.

But, we got in 1.5 miles. I was happy. My son insisted that he could have walked 3 miles in the same time span. Well, sure. When you're legs are as long as my whole body for pities sake!! But, he enjoyed it! It was the first real exercise he had done since returning home. Today, he walked the dog a couple of miles at the park. Shhh. Don't tell. I think we have a new convert.

Remember my 100% GUARANTEE. Should you decide to stop walking and resume your old habits, I personally guarantee that you'll get back 100% of your former life - your pain, your lifestyle, your attitude.

Saturday, December 20, 2008


When I re-entered the workforce after 13 years at home raising kids, I was met with a new to me phrase 'to get an attitude with someone'. I had no idea what that meant. Well, I quickly found out that it was a negative thing. You had a verbal confrontation with the clerk at the store and 'she got an attitude with me'. Okay. Everyone has an attitude. But, an attitude does not have to be negative.

In fact, we're here to improve your attitude. Was it Abe Lincoln who said something like 'I think people feel just about as good as they want to'? Something like that. He was onto something. Of course, there are those sad people who have intrinsic depression, overwhelming health or emotional problems, deep financial woes. But, most of us do okay most days. On occasion, we find ourselves sinking into a mildly negative mindset because our lives are not like those we see on TV shows - you know - fancy homes, nice clothes, great cars, kids with neat haircuts, plenty of money, plenty of time to gossip with the neighbors, and no evidence of having to pay bills or go talk to the principal about a recalcitrant 5th grader. Yeah, right. This is not reality - no matter how much they try to sell us on 'Reality Shows'. If you see it on network TV, it ain't real!

We all fall into that pit of judging our insides by other people's outsides. It's a bad plan. But, what do we do about it? We get an attitude adjustment (AA). We strive for an Attitude of Gratitude (AOG). Here's how:

One part of a healthy life is good health. One way to attain or maintain good health is to keep our bodies moving so that our body's natural attitude adjustors (endorphins) can do their jobs. They must be released into our bloodstream to aid us. How does this happen. Well, I'm no scientist, but I can tell you that there are a couple of ways:

Improve your face value with a smile.
Celebrate something - anything.
Laugh, Hug, Touch.
Move your body.

Smiling sounds easy. But, some days we all find it hard. Celebrating is fine if we have something to celebrate. If we celebrate every little thing, then celebrating becomes nothing special. Birthdays come only once a year for a reason. No matter how old I become, I believe I will always look forward to celebrating my birthday - a day just for me - a cake, cards and/or gifts, kind words. It doesn't take much.

Laugh, Hug, Touch. If you live alone, the hugging and touching part become very difficult. After my Dad died, my Mom said the thing she missed most was just being touched. We were never a huggy family, but I began giving my mom a hug every time I see her. Endorphins are released.

Laugh - find something funny on TV, read a column in the paper or a magazine that makes you laugh, call a friend and ask for a joke, keep a joke book on hand and read it. Think back over good times. Take out a photo album of your kids as toddlers, yourself as a teen jock, your wedding, you mom or dad.

Walk. Simple. It releases those endorphins. You get 'high' on life. Nature's 'high'. People pay a lot of money and risk prison to get the kind of high from drugs that you can obtain from walking. Who knew?? Try it, it works.

In addition to all of the above, get a small notebook and write down one or two things each day for which you are grateful. Read it aloud to yourself if there's no one else to share it with. Little things, big things, strange things. Maybe you're grateful that you could get the lid off the vanilla extract today. Maybe you saw a host of butterflies. Maybe those first big snowflakes of the season were beautiful. Maybe the feel of the mist on your face on a bleary day felt fresh. Maybe you're just grateful that you could walk your 10 minutes today. Write it down. When you're feeling low, take out your notebook and remind yourself what you were grateful for yesteday and last week. It'll fill you up.

Then, walk a bit.

Thursday, December 18, 2008


Here's your assignment today. Write down one thing you like about yourself. JUST one thing.
There must be something!! ( I bet you didn't know there'd be homework, did you?)

Every day after your walk, write down one thing you like about yourself. No repeats. Your beautiful blue eyes are no more beautiful a week from now than now. You can only list them once.

One hundred days from today - mark that date on your calendar - sit down and read the entire list.
Read it to yourself silently.

Now, you can repeat if you need to. But, you have a new habit. There is nothing wrong about feeling right about yourself. The wrong is that we forget to let ourselves know how special we are.

If you'd like to know more about this topic, read the teeny tiny little book by Og Mandino titled:
The Greatest Miracle In The World.

Now that you feel so good about yourself, stop writing and start walking. You can't go wrong with the three W's - Wread, Write, Walk. Okay, I have a degree in English but I can take some liberties.

Tuesday, December 16, 2008


Remember that we've got to keep moving. Today, because of the weather and my schedule, I walked for 45 minutes at the mall. It was very crowded, but I got my walk in. I DO NOT take any cash or credit cards to the mall with me so I don't spend extra money mindlessly. Seeing something cute in a store window is 'sightseeing', not an opportunity to blow my credit limit! I'm really not much of a 'window shopper', but if you are, the mall or a quaint village downtown area might be the perfect place for your walk. I certainly am always well informed on the latest teen fashions because of the miles I walk at the mall.

Other ways to make your walk more fun? Here are a few. Some will be explored in greater depth in later postings.

Visit a museum, art gallery, or botanical garden, the zoo, or any other local attraction with walkways. There will always be something new to look at in these destinations. Most will be free or very inexpensive. Should you find that walking at the botanical gardens is fun but expensive, it might be worth buying an annual membership to keep you motivated. Better yet, ask for that membership for a gift.

Create a scavenger hunt for yourself and/or others. Make a list of things you want to 'find' on your walk. A red car, a tabby cat, a turtle, 7 crows, a man walking a dog, a jogger, a tennis doubles match, kids in the pool, a taxi (rare in my area), a pedestrian crosswalk sign, and so forth. You can carry your list with you and mark things off as you find them or jot them off your list when you return home. Since I don't wear my reading glasses while walking, I would find it a challenge to mark off items on a list. Trade lists with another walker. Have someone else make a list for you. Put a list of items on scraps of paper in a jar and pull out 10 of them for your walk.

Volunteer to work at the zoo or as an usher at the theater. You'll get in a lot of walking if you're a docent a the zoo or a museum and you'll be helping your neighbors and worthy organizations while you're getting your walk in. Think how virtuous you'll feel!

Geocache! What's that? It's a sort of scavenger hunt. Go to www.geocaching.com to learn all about it. Register and join the hunt. More on this later.

Remember my 100% GUARANTEE. Should you decide to stop walking and resume your old habits, I personally guarantee that you'll get back 100% of your former life - your pain, your lifestyle, your attitude.

Sunday, December 14, 2008


For those of us who are able to or prefer to walk outside, we always have to consider the weather. I will walk in most any kind of weather - but I won't walk outside after dark, on ice, or in a downpour. But, I still want (no, need) to get my walk in. What to do?

There are a couple of simple options. First, put on some bouncy music and move to it. Walk in place. Walk in a circle. You never have to leave your home to get in your walk. Not perfect, but it'll keep you on track and moving.

Is there a mall or large store near you? Most of them welcome walkers, especially in their off-peak hours. Many malls actually host walking groups and clubs. Join one if it interests you. You'll meet people, make friends, and walk more. The only downside to walking at the mall is that the floors can be darn hard on hips and knees. So, walk a bit slower or a bit less. But, don't give up. Take your pain killers ahead of time if you take them.

If no mall is within a reasonable distance, pick the largest store available and go there during hours when they're not busy. Ask the manager. If you're a regular customer, s/he knows you spend money there and will continue to do so, you won't be in the way in off peak hours, and you just might spend more money because you'll be there more often than just shopping day(s). Never hurts to ask. I've never had a manager say, 'No, you can't walk in my store.' Roller skates might be forbidden - but not feet with walking shoes on them. Really....

Buy a walking tape. My favorite is Leslie Sansone. She has many walking tapes (VHS and DVD) available. I have purchased mine at www.half.com for cheap. She has walks customized for various levels - one mile, two mile, three mile, four mile, senior walking, walking with weights, etc. These have proved well worth the few dollars I have spent on them. When I put on my walking shoes and it starts to pour, I pop Leslie in my DVD player and walk in place for the amount of time I have available. Her miles are about 15 minutes each. She will guide you well so that you don't over exert if you're not up to the level of her walks. Never fear. So long as you march in place, you'll keep up with her easy walk routines. No steps to memorize or fancy maneuvers. Just walking, low kicks, and a few upper body movements if you're up to them.

If you're not sure you want to spend the money for a walking video, borrow one from the library or a friend and try it out. It's a great compromise for many of us. Get your walk in no matter what - and that's what it's all about. No excuses.

Call someone and walk in place or around your home while you talk. Set a timer. Before you know it, you're walk will be over and you'll still want to move. No kidding.

Friday, December 12, 2008


Are you confined to your bed or mobile only on your scooter or a wheel chair? Don't give up.

Why are you confined? Is it mostly because of weight? Does it hurt you to walk? Are you unable to transfer yourself from bed to scooter?

If these are true for you, consult your physician and ask if you can stand for a few minutes each day. Unless you have an ailment that will be made worse by weightbearing (like a broken ankle), you'll be allowed to stand for a few minutes each day. This counts as a walk.

Get yourself positioned so that if you MUST sit down and can't remain standing for your 90 seconds, you can ease yourself down. Falling is not allowed!!!!! Standing is the first component to walking. Can't walk if you can't stand. Can't run if you can't walk. First things first. Work on that standing.

WHAT IF IT HURTS? Guess what! It's gonna hurt anyway, so why not put up with the minutes of pain to regain your mobility. It can be done. It has been done. YOU CAN DO IT.

Stand, walk, walk faster, walk longer. Do what you can. No one is judging you or tracking your progress unless you post on this site and want to keep track. Tracking is a good tool - but is not required. It's just a tool. Mobility is YOUR goal. Walking will come.

REMEMBER - it's about feeling better. I'm not here to judge or poke. Just to encourage and remind you WHAT IS POSSIBLE. Probable is up to YOU.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008


Diet Schmiet. This is not about diets. This is not about weight loss. This is just about walking and feeling better.

Look around. Most of America is overweight - but somehow we all get around. It could be better but it could be worse. The focus of this blog is walking and feeling good. If you happen to lose a few pounds along the way, well, you probably won't complain. Right?

Why do I not talk about diets? Diets are unnatural. Diets are temporary and mind boggling. Diets are confusing and hard to follow. Ultimately, diets make us feel bad, requiring an AA (attitude adjustment) every time we 'break' the rules. Life's too short for that.

That said, if you are, in fact, on a diet, we won't ostracize you. We'll like you anyway. Some of us MUST follow a diabetic, low salt, or other physician-ordered diet. That's fine. Stick with it. The reasons for those diets are specific and will lead you to a healthier life. In fact, some of them are downright lifesavers.

I have to tell you about my husband's secretary. Three years ago, at age 52, she had a major heart attack. This was a woman, mom to four grown sons, who smoked, drank oodles of coffee and soda every day, lived on highly refined food (read fast food), never exercised, and had a bad family history for heart disease. She wound up staying in the hospital 10 days and spent another week or so at home before being able to return to work part time - then full time. During her imposed nicotine abstinence, she was forced to quit smoking (and gave herself a $200+ raise a month). When she left the hospital, she had a consultation with a dietician who instructed her on a low fat diet. This woman has followed this diet to a T. She never varies. Since the day of her heart attack, she has eaten no red meat, consumed no caffeine and no fast food, has eliminated calorie laden snacks from her diet, and cooks all her own meals. She lost about 20 pounds right away but has lost no more in the intervening three years. Why is that? Well, she did NOT start an exercise regimen which was also physician ordered at the time of her hospital discharge.

I have never known anyone to follow a diet the way this woman has. It has been remarkable. After her initial weight loss, when her weight plateaued, she complained that she was losing no weight. I told her that further weight loss would only be achieved with exercise. I gave her my one mile Leslie Sansone tape since I have moved beyond that. She cannot complete that one mile even though she is active at work all day! I told her to use the tape as a guideline and just do what she can. She walks to that tape only a couple times a week so it has not been very effective for her since she does no other walking outside the office.

So, diet is okay - but it's not the answer. Weight loss is possible with a diet - but will not be sustained unless further action is taken. That action is, quite literally, action - moving one's body. Walking is the easiest and least taxing. Walking is easy, accessible, normal, natural, and very efficient. If this gal would walk that one mile a day (15 minutes), she'd continue to lose more weight since she follows her diet so strictly and has done so for three years this month (December, 2008).

So, what about you? Do you think Atkins will change your life? Is Weight Watchers your path? What about South Beach, the cabbage soup diet, low fat, low carb, low everything? Bottom line is that diets don't work because as soon as you go off the diet, you regain the weight - UNLESS you have incorporated a plan of physical action to enhance your lifestyle. So, walk it off!

But remember our Prime Directive - it's about FEELING good! Do it because you'll feel better even if you never lose an ounce. The 100% guarantee still applies.

Monday, December 8, 2008


Okay, you have kids, a house, a job, a husband, not a husband, not a house, money problems, spouse problems, health problems. In short, you're busy! Who isn't? But, who has time for that 10-30 minutes a day to walk. You do!! You're worth it!

How do you get those 30 minutes? You grab them from the rest of your life. You make yourself a priority in your own life. You put EVERYONE and everything else on hold for your walking time. Trust me when I tell you that everyone around you will get used to it. Plus, they'll like the new you who returns from your walk. You've gotten an immediate attitude adjustment (by walking), have more energy to meet the other needs of your day, and it only took a few minutes.

Should you get up a half hour early to fit in your walk? Probably not as you're probably already sleep deprived if you have the aforementioned kids, house, job, etc. I'm not a morning person, so an early morning walk would be torture for me. Late morning works in my schedule on week days and weekends allow more flexibility.

If YOU are not important enough in your own life to give yourself 10-30 minutes a day, who is? Use your lunch time to walk. You can walk indoors or outdoors because the same rules apply. All you need is the shoes and the minutes. Walking in place works fine. Walking outside is even better.

Before you KNOW it, family members, co-workers, and everyone else in your life will simply accept that you are walking right now. Everything else will wait.

Here's a quick story. My grandmother hated being a housewife and being indoors. She would use any excuse to ditch the housework and work or play outside. When I was a child, I spent summers with her in rural Arkansas where my grandfather owned a large country general store where all the family members worked. My Mamaw cooked dinner (lunch as opposed to the evening meal, supper) for all the family and whoever else was there. In the summers, that was 10-12 people at the dinner table 6 days a week. She began cooking early in the morning and quit only when As The World Turns came on TV (some of my earliest memories and I still watch it!). After dinner, she would often get a phone call from someone (who only had to feed 1 or 2 people their dinner) who would want her to go pick berries or fish. We would stop IN THE MIDDLE OF WASHING DISHES or whatever we were doing and head out to the fun activity outdoors. Mamaw would say, we can leave the work because NO ONE WILL DO IT WHILE WE'RE GONE. IT'LL BE HERE WHEN WE GET BACK. To this day, I remember her words and her attitude - and I remember picking berries in the woods and fishing in the canal as some of my fondest recollections. So - take my Mamaw's attitude for your own. No one will do your housework in your absence. It'll still be there. It'll keep while you get in your walk, especially if you have a buddy who's available to walk RIGHT THEN. Go for it!! Keep it up. You're worth it. And your family and co-workers will like the new you (who returns to work with the proper AA).

Saturday, December 6, 2008


Amidst all the hustle and bustle of the holidays, we all need to take time for ourselves. You hear and read that all the time, right? It doesn't matter what religion you are. It doesn't matter if you're male or female, rich or poor, fat or thin, old or young. We all need to take time for ourselves.

I INSIST that YOU take 15-20 minutes EACH day for yourself. You NEED it! The chores will wait. Your desk won't get any messier. Your shopping list won't get any shorter. You won't get richer. BUT, you'll FEEL so much better and have more energy to take care of all that's required of you by work, home, and family.

So, start immediately to make a plan for yourself. How will you get through the holidays - these holidays - without making yourself crazy and TAKING CARE OF YOURSELF in addition to all the other things you must take care of?

You're plan will be simple. Somewhere in each 24 hours, you'll set aside 15-20 minutes to walk. Just walk. These may be abbreviated walks. You might like to walk longer or farther. These might be slower walks than you're used to - or faster if you're fightin' mad about missing that deal at the mall or if you want to sock your boss. Walk it OFF!

Start now. No New Year's Resolutions. They don't work anyway. Don't put it off. Envision yourself putting on your walking shoes (or wearing them on your regular rounds) and heading outward bound for 7 minutes then back for 7 minutes. SEVEN MINUTES. How bad can that be? That's 14 minutes. You're done til tomorrow.

Think about this. If you start now, by January 2, 2009, you'll have walked 350 minutes even if you take off Christmas Day and New Year's Day! That's more than 23 miles if you use 15 minutes as your baseline mile. TWENTY THREE MILES BEFORE JANUARY 3, 2009. It can be done! Walk On!

Don't be discouraged if you have yet to begin walking or if you only walk 3 minutes a day. Begin now! Don't be deterred. You'll make remarkable progress in endurance and healthy feelings before the New Year. If you walk only 3 minutes each day between now and January 2, you'll have walked 75 minutes or FIVE MILES. Did you ever think you'd walk 5 miles!! You can!

Remember my 100% GUARANTEE. Should you decide to stop walking and resume your old habits, I personally guarantee that you'll get back 100% of your former life - your pain, your lifestyle, your attitude.


Does it hurt you to walk? Do you have pain that inhibits you from walking? Does pain leave you unmotivated?

So what! It'll hurt whether you walk or not - so walk. The more you walk, the farther away you'll push that pain. It may never go entirely away. You may never become completely pain free with your walks. I'm not. I must take analgesics (pain pills) before my 2-3 mile walks each day. But, if I chose to not walk that day, I'll still have the pain.

This is where the Attitude Adjustment (AA) will come in handy. It's all in how you look at it. If you want to get better, to progress, to make your life better, you'll chose walking. If you don't want any of these things, why are you reading this blog?

Remember the 100% guarantee. You'll get back all your pain and sedentary lifestyle - guaranteed. And, for what my blogs cost you - well the relative value is phenomenal!!


Friday, December 5, 2008


Have you been writing down the one thing you like about yourself each day? If not, start now. If you miss a day, the world will not come to an end. Progress not Perfection. Progressing along - by now, you might have a nice collection of little writings about things you like about yourself.

Here's an idea. Recycle those thoughts. Copy your journal page and cut into strips - you know, like in fortune cookies. Fold each strip a couple times. Get a large jar or coffee can and decorate it (or not) to match your decor. I have no decor to speak of. In my house, if you put something down, it stays there for 5 years and becomes decor. Eclectic is a great word. My decor is 'eclectic'. Covers a multitude of sins and I don't much care about it anyway. But, I do enjoy decorating jars.

Decorate with things cut out of magazines, fabric strips, ribbons, buttons, bow, paints, glitter, old jewelry. A hot glue gun can work wonders for the craft-challenged (and the decor challenged). You can even glue the sole of your walking shoes back on with a hot glue gun to get you by til you can get your next pair of shoes!!

Then, put all your little folded strips into that pretty container. Every day BEFORE you go for your walk - or if you just can't get yourself motivated - pull out one of the strips and read it. See! You are a wonderful person with many fine attributes. Even YOU think so! You wrote it down. How authoritative. How real. How true. The Gratitude Container (GC) never lies!

Remember my 100% GUARANTEE. Should you decide to stop walking and resume your old habits, I personally guarantee that you'll get back 100% of your former life - your pain, your lifestyle, your attitude.


Not exactly a winter wonderland - just coooooold. I had a light afternoon at the office, looked outside and noticed the sun was shining. I knew the temperature was about 27 degrees (F) but the sun was shining. Sun!! I ditched work an hour early (it helps to work for your husband) and called a friend. I would have walked without her, but she was available.

I hustled home and changed into my silk undies and layered up. Have I told you about silk undies? These are a GREAT investment. You can pay $50 for each piece (top and bottom) or you can go to a site like www.sierratradingpost.com and find them for about $30 for the whole set. I've even found nice pieces at thrift stores for under $3. Since I'm not skinny enough to layer with cotton long johns or woolen undies, silk is perfect for me. Silk breathes, so you don't overheat even if you overdress. Plus, clothing glides effortlessly over silk - but not over cotton or wool.

So, we layered ourselves in silk, fleece, and wool, doubled our mittens, and wrapped scarves around our necks and set off in the sun to get in a couple miles on the track near our homes. We decided on the track rather than the sidewalk because we could spend more time in the sun. The shade was just that much colder.

So, we walked and talked. Before we knew it, we had walked three miles. Now, the track is flat, so that's an easier three miles than walking the sidewalks with their hills. But, three miles is THREE MILES.

I feel so good. I feel energetic and virtuous. Yes, virtuous. It's getting dark now and there's no way I would have been able to get in my walk outside today if I'd waited til normal quitting time. I came home and changed to my clogs for around the house. Now dinner and laundry await me. But, I've got energy for that. I wouldn't have have been so energetic if I hadn't walked earlier. That's paradoxical - but true. Expending energy gives one energy. Try it, it works!

Monday, December 1, 2008


Do you think you need special shoes to walk in? Athletic shoe manufacturers would like you to think so. For now, just walk in whatever is comfortable for you. Chose the most comfortable pair of shoes you own and be sure to wear socks or nylons so you don't get blisters. If you have corns, calluses, bunions or other foot problems, consult a podiatrist or other doctor to see if you need something special. Likely, you'll be fine walking in comfortable shoes you already have in your closet.

If you begin walking and develop foot pain, you DO need to consult a physician especially if the pain is localized - that is, if it's in a particular region rather than being more widespread. A podiatrist can work wonders on corns - one of the most painful things you can develop on your feet. Bunions and calluses require other forms of treatment.

But, this is putting the cart before the horse. Walk first. You may well NEVER develop any foot problems. But, for sure, you won't know unless you DO walk. Gotcha!!

So, put on your shoes and move on out. If you put on your walking shoes first thing in the morning, you're more likely to take advantage of those commercials and phone calls to get in your 10 minutes a day (for beginners).

Don't walk barefoot unless you are used to walking a lot with no foot support. It's tempting to stand up from the sofa and walk for 90 seconds to 3 minutes while a commercial is airing. Why not? Because you cause more dynamic weight on your unprotected feet and stand a greater chance of stubbing a toe or sustaining other foot injury. Just put on some shoes so you can walk.


Ever wonder why we humans have feet? It's to walk! Sounds simple. It is. But, simple isn't always easy. If you want to feel better, get rid of minor aches and pains, improve your outlook, brighten up your attitude, you've come to the right blog. You and I will walk it off!

Walking requires very little investment of time or money. A comfy pair of shoes and a few minutes a day - inside or outside - will have get you moving. I wear New Balance shoes - and find them well worth the $125 they cost. They fit well, leave me with no foot pain, and are durable. But, this is not an advertisement for New Balance. This is an advertisement for WALKING!

So, even if you've never walked farther than from your sofa to your refrigerator, but you want to feel better, join me in this ongoing endeavor. We'll take it slow for beginners and beef it up for those who are occasional or regular walkers.

A bit about myself. I'm a Midwest woman who hated the very idea of having to walk every day to feel better. Hated it! I have arthritis and fibromyalgia. I have now had two knee replacements and I'm not old enough for that. About 10 years ago, I lost 65 pounds - by walking. No kidding. I changed a few eating habits - but I don't DO diets. I'm a foodaholic and my husband loves to both cook and feed me! And, I love to eat his cooking, my cooking, your cooking - anybody's cooking! Know what I mean. Since 1998, I've kept 50 of those 65 pounds off. How has this happened? Well, I walk most every day. Lately, I've added linedancing to this. I love to move. I'm now a 'normal' dress size and life is easier. It can be for you too - even if you have no weight to lose or don't want to lose weight, think you can't lose weight, or like your weight just like it is. THIS BLOG IS NOT ABOUT DIETS OR WEIGHT LOSS. It's just about moving - mostly walking.

Our bodies were designed (and we won't be discussing by whom or why) for movement. Our bodies were NOT designed for sitting around watching TV. Really! We are supposed to stand erect. We have two legs and feet to walk with, two arms to swing, a heart to send oxygen to our limbs, and a brain to release those wonderful endorphins when we get moving.

So, briefly, here's my plan. You'll read my blog and be motivated to stand up and move about (walk). If you're a sedentary person, you'll do this only during TV commercials - but you'll do it for 10 minutes a day. You'll walk in front of your TV if it's icy or rainy or too cold out for you. You'll walk to the end of your block, to the next driveway, to the next building, to the next tree or whatever today. If distance is not possible, then you'll start with time. You'll walk for one minute today. Tomorrow or next week, you'll add one more minute, one more commerical, driveway, tree, mailbox, or building. Slowly and steadily, you'll build up time and/or distance.

We'll be taking this one day at a time - one step at a time. If you don't think you can do it - you won't. If you think you can do it but are unsure, give it a try. You have nothing to lose. If you begin walking and work up to 10 minutes a day and then quit, I guarantee you a 100% refund of your sedentary lifestyle, your aches and pains, your mental fog. No kidding.

One disclaimer: If you can, plan to take a couple of Tylenol or Ibuprofen 30-60 minutes before your walk. This bit of relief of pain and inflammation will insure you a more comfortable and ultimately longer walk. Of course, consult with your physician if such over the counter medications pose a problem for you (drug interactions, other pain killers, etc). If you have stronger anti pain meds that you take when you need them, this would be the time to take them if you need them - especially once you work up to 10 or more minutes of activity each day.

My personal goal is to get everyone with feet walking. It's so helpful if you have a buddy to walk with, to chat with, to encourage you. If you don't, then consider us your buddy and post your daily walking experiences here. Did you see a new plant on your walk? Did you learn something new on Oprah today? Do you have a question about 'how to walk'? Have you made progress in your walks - walking farther or longer? PLEASE let us know. We all want to cheer each other on.

I will be launching a sister site to link walkers online so that everyone has a walking buddy if one isn't available to you locally. This will be open to anyone, of any age, of any size and weight, of any color, race, religion, ethnicity, national origin. This will be available to anyone who needs to walk at 11:00 AM or 11:00 PM - inside, outside, at the track, at the gym, in your living room, in your basement, on a treadmill, anywhere at any time. Working the third shift or every weekend is no excuse. Having 2 kids under 2 years of age is no excuse (been there, done that). Working full time is no excuse. Having a long commute is no excuse. Being on your feet all day at work is no excuse. This is not boot camp. No one is going to force you to walk. You're GONNA WANNA WALK with me!

Let's get moving! Why? Because we have feet and want to feel good!