If you are physically able, you do it all the time without even thinking about it. It’s how we get around everyday and our first steps were probably documented by our parents as one of the most joyous occasions as babies. Walking is the most basic form of exercise there is and often the gateway to running. Unfortunately, with so many people in office jobs that require them to be sedentary and the amount of time people spend in their cars getting to and from work or just around for daily errands, this behavior often breeds further fatigue and inactivity by shutting down the body’s basic systems.
When it comes down to it, our health is pretty much what we have to carry us through life. If we aren’t treating our bodies well and neglecting basic functional movement and proper nutrition, we may not have the best quality of life as we get older. Active Community member Bunny Lenhard made this discovery early enough that has made her a fitness superstar! She happily obliged when we wanted to share her story in her words on how running and walking have impacted her life:
“In January 1983, I made a New Year’s resolution that I was going to become more fit and active. It seemed like running was the easiest thing to do as far as scheduling. I bought a pair of running shoes and hit the streets. Every day I ran a little farther. When I reached a mile it seemed like the distances were limitless and one challenge led to yet another. Fast forward to 2014 and I’m still out there but have switched to power walking which is easier on my knees and hips.
One of the best things about running – and now walking – is that you need no equipment other than good shoes and socks. Your time frame is your own, you go when you want, anywhere you want and at your own pace. There have been so many benefits from walking, the obvious ones such as weight control and better cardiovascular health, but there are so many more. To me the mental and spiritual benefit of being at one with nature is paramount as is the feeling of well being that comes from exercise. Although I love being outside, I do belong to a gym where I do weight work, circuit training, use a treadmill and rowing machines. I also attend a weekly yoga class. I think it’s important to participate in a variety of activities for strength and flexibility.
When I began running, I participated in many races. However, 30 years ago the races were not walker-friendly. It’s a very different story today since almost all races welcome walkers. So although I am no longer running, I continue to race.”
Stay tuned as we find out Bunny’s current plans for racing and how community engagement with fitness has enhanced her W-A-L-K through life!