Some of history’s greatest minds, from Steve Jobs to Charles Dickens, realized walking daily helped them think, create, and innovate better. Walking for exercise just thirty minutes a day offers numerous health, mental, and emotional benefits, yet it can be difficult to get the motivation to get up and go. Here are some common roadblocks that keep us from walking, and how to overcome them.
We undervalue the benefits: When trying to decide between thirty minutes watching TV or thirty minutes doing something that’s ‘good for you’, it’s easy to pick the couch. Re-frame how you view walking instead to an activity that will decrease your stress, make you more productive, decrease your risk of heart disease, improve your mental well-being, etc. Focus on the benefits of walking, not on how comfortable the sofa is.
We don’t think we have the time: Yes, our lives can get hectic. But what we often forget is when we are intentional about finding time in the day, we usually can. If you really don’t think you can devote thirty straight minutes, break up the walk into chunks. A few minute walk in the morning, afternoon, and evening is better than no walk at all.
We don’t want to be alone: Not everyone loves the solitude of a nature walk. If the thought of a solo walk keeps you from going, find a partner. Your dog, friend, neighbor, spouse, just grab someone and go.
We don’t want to be bored: If walking for thirty minutes sounds, well, boring, there’s a simple solution. Make it fun! Download music or podcasts that you only listen to while you walk. Call someone who lives far away, a parent, old friend, or great aunt. Use the walk as a way to explore the city, such as taking a self-guided audio tour of Indianapolis. Walking each day can be a fun activity. You just need to find what makes it fun for you.