Wednesday, May 07, 2008

Ode to a Walk

I've never been a big fan of exercise. In junior high, I went out for track for exactly one day. Why? Because that entire first day, we ran around and around in the gym. I'm not a runner.

But I am a walker.

My dog and I love to take long walks around our neighborhood. With the weather being absolutely gorgeous lately and all the spring flowers in bloom, I'm really loving our evening walks. And the benefits are many. Exercise (for me and my dog!). Lots and lots of thinking time. Enjoying nature. And when my daughter and my husband come with me, lots of laughter and talking. Sometimes we'll all go to a local park and take long, meandering walks through the woods and by the lake.

Writers often talk about how walking is part of their writing process. I know it's definitely part of mine. I've worked through many a plot problem or character issue while on my walks, either on the treadmill or outside. Just last night I thought of a way to resolve a plot hole in my current manuscript, although I think I was more excited at my discovery than my dog. ;-)


  1. I'm with you - walking is waaaaaay more fun than running :) I can run on a treadmill, with good music on, but that's about it. I too have worked things out on many walks, though it's harder here as there aren't too many places I can safely (as in, staying away from bears, cougars etc) by myself. I now get lots of ideas on the elliptical.

    Hmmm, maybe we should rethink the dog thing - a dog would protect me on my solitary walks!

    Congrats on figuring out how to plug that plot hole!!

  2. I work through my delays while running. I'm going to go for one over the lunch hour to push me through this story that I'm on right now.

  3. I do this--I love to walk and so does the dog LOL. And I spend lots of time inside my head thinking about characters and plot and the next story, or something I missed in the last one... I think my lips move too, so I wear my MP3 player too :)

  4. I've forgotten how much I enjoy walking. I used to get up early and go on my own. Now there never seems to be enough time.

    Good for you. It sounds lovely.

  5. This is exactly my problem! Every time I go out and walk or even drive somewhere alone (I work at home so this is actually doesn't happen too often), I solve my plotting problems. I think I need to schedule my solo walks and make them a priority no matter how busy I get at work. It's taking me way too long to figure my issues out this time.

  6. I just saw your comment about Calvin & Hobbes on Ello's blog and I had to check out your blog! Anyone who likes Calvin & Hobbes has got to have an interesting blog, and I am thrilled to find that you are also interested in history, so my cup runneth over.

    Walking is my sport too, as is swimming; I CANNOT run. And yes, walking is great for musing out writing problems. So is weeding. Our yard is remarkable for having fewer dandelions than any other in the neighborhood.

  7. Tess, yes, getting a dog would be a great idea! My dog absolutely loves it when we go on walks and since he's pretty big, I also feel very safe.

    Brian, I think running can accomplish much the same as walking. I'm just not a runner. *grin*

    LOL, Toni! I think I talk to myself all the time when I walk, so you're not alone!

    Anissa, early morning walks are so wonderful - but I rarely get to do them. I like to sleep in too much on the weekends. :-)

    Lisa, yes! Make it a regular part of your schedule! Last night I really did not want to walk, but I forced myself and felt so much better after I had.

    Hi Mary, thanks for stopping by! Yes, I am a HUGE Calvin & Hobbes fan. I was very depressed when their creator retired. I also think swimming is a great sport - but I am like a rock when I get into the water - I go right to the bottom of the pool. :-)

  8. I usually walk an hour a day, either on my lunch hour or after work - except in the winter. Then the time gets logged on the treadmill which I find booooring. But I love to run too. I ran track and played soccer all through school. THere is just something about the thrill of speed that gets me competitive juices flowing. But the walking, that allows me time to think and plot and just unwind. Sometimes I think about the book, sometimes I just let my brain goes where it wants too.

  9. Kelly - We walk a lot during the day at our job, too. A group of us will go walk around downtown - gets us out of our chairs and is a lot healthier, too.

  10. Does it count if I think about walking? I just don't want to do it!

  11. Running? Yuk. No way. But walking, oh yes. I love it. I'm sure I'm doing my best writing - even if it is only in my head - when I'm out walking with the dogs.


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