A Simple French Pleasure - Walking
One of the simplest pleasures the French embrace with a vengeance is walking. If you can walk, walk. Taking the extra 5, 10, 20 minutes to get some fresh air, stretch your legs, and enjoy the sunshine is not only healthy for you, but feels sooooo good. I read recently by a woman named Lori Hamann, of Evolve Life Coaching that said if you want to attract good things in your life, than "feel good." She goes on to say, “Nothing is more important than feeling good. This is a key to manifesting abundance in your life. The French, they’ve figured it out, walking makes you feel good, so do it as much as you can.
Waking up to the bright sunshine overlooking the beautiful bay, I decided that my daughter and I would walk to her summer camp ½ mile away instead of drive. Nudging her to wake a bit earlier, dress a bit quicker, and eat her breakfast while she read a book (versus read and then swallow her breakfast whole), we had plenty of time to walk.
The one thing I learned about living in France was not only the benefits of walking for your health, but how it is so enjoyable as a mode of transportation. Living in more suburban areas, it is not always easy. It definitely takes longer and it often feels like you are wasting time. On the other hand, when I walk with my daughter to camp, we are getting exercise, have a nice stroll hand in hand, have time to leisurely talk about the day, the dog gets a good walk, and we are getting our Vitamin D early in the morning as the sun shines on us.
Twenty minutes after we left the house we arrived at her Audubon Summer Camp refreshed, calm, connected, and relaxed. She stopped along the way to show me a plant that she had just learned about and pointed out the area in the bay in which the leopard sharks hangout. Today, she informed me she was going to wade into the water and catch one herself.
After leaving her at camp, I walked back home thinking about my day, reposed and ready to go. In reflection, I realized I saved 5 minutes of driving time each way (as the walking path had a shortcut). Choosing to use my 10 minutes differently than normal was a reminder once again on how the small choices we make lead to healthy, joyful living. The fact that today, I was conscious and willing to take that extra ten minutes and wake up a bit earlier, made all the difference in my morning and my day for that matter. Maybe I can’t do it all the time, and yes it takes extra time and planning, but that is just what the French do—take that extra time and reap the rewards it provides.
I highly recommend if you want to feel good today, wake up earlier, take an extra 30 or 60 minutes and walk to the store, walk to a restaurant, walk to the park, the school, camp, work, or even the bus stop. You will feel great afterwards. It’s a promise!
And yes, you will reduce your carbon footprint at the same time.