How to Make a Walk Fun

When I challenged myself to 30 miles in November, I was simply trying to build my endurance back up so I could start run training again around December. I have a few mud runs, obstacle course runs and fun runs that I want to sign up for in 2015. The challenge has been a great motivation to me this month but every once in awhile I didn’t want to walk because it felt boring. So with only 10 days left of the 30 miles in November challenge, here are my tips on how to spice up a walk so you can get those miles in!

1. I bring my minions with me. No not the actual minions from the movie (though that would be AWESOME), it is my nickname for the dogs (and one cat) that rule my home. Most of you know I have 3 of them (a viszla mix who is 12 yrs old, a shiba inu mix who is 3 yrs old and a mini dachshund that just turned 1 year old) but I can’t walk them all together. So I alternate them in pairs depending on who they walk best with and also how long the walk will be. Sometimes I even pop home and switch half way through a walk. My point is, they are a ton of fun to walk with and keep me very motivated. I mean, you just can’t help but feel peppy when your dog shows so much enthusiasm over a simple walk and smelling ALL THE SMELLS. Plus when they give me that sad face stare, I can’t help but pull on my sweats to go on the walk.

2. For my long walks I pick new places to explore. My old neighborhood was horrible to walk around in. Unsafe, no nature area and it was just a little scary. So we found a wetlands park to walk around instead. When we moved two years ago we were super upset about not being anywhere close to the wetlands area anymore and kind of made it our mission to find other places to walk. I love nature. I hate walking city streets endlessly. So when I discovered that there were a lot more places to explore around my new house, I was super excited. This month already I have found many long nature trails, the old railroad tracks go both ways, I can walk to the river, there is the short walk through the park and the list goes on. As I walk more and more, I discover new trails and fun things to do. Like climb trees and take pictures of cacti.

3. I try to push myself each walk to go a little further. I keep track of all my walks with Map My Walk, that way I know how many miles I am averaging each weekend. So each walk I try to push myself a bit further. During the week that is harder because by the time I walk it is dark but on the weekends I do my long walks and that is when I try to challenge myself. Last weekend I decided to walk the old tracks towards the park at the end. It is roughly 1.20 miles one way. Not a big deal lately with how many miles I have been adding on but last year I couldn’t do it. Okay that isn’t true, I did it once. It took me 4 hours to walk there and back. I needed breaks. I was really sore afterwards. So I would only walk half way there and back from then on out. But last weekend I got it stuck in my head to make it all the way to the park and I did, then I turned around and made it back home, total time.. 1 hour. That is a big deal to me. I even stopped to climb a tree which ate into my time a bit. The weekend before that I climbed a huge hill I had always avoided before. These are the small challenges I give to myself each long walk.
4. My husband and I play the house game. We created this game when we lived in apartments and would get stir crazy in our small space. Usually during the winter months. So we would head to Starbucks or the gas station, buy some hot chocolate and put a few bucks of gas in. Then we would pick a fancy neighborhood and spend some time driving through it. The point was to point out the houses we liked and imagine what they would look like on the inside. We would imagine how we would decorate and how we would hang our holiday lights. It was fun but now we live in a house within walking distance of the neighborhoods we used to love. So when we decide to walk the streets instead of the nature trails we play the house game. We point out houses we love, imagine what they look like on the inside and even grab flyers if they are for sale. Keeps things fun and interesting when you are walking the city streets. We have even started heading in different directions to get to new neighborhood areas to explore.
5. I write down all my miles where I can clearly see them. I have a white board on the fridge and currently it is tracking my miles. One of the silly but motivating things I do is write down each day how many miles I walked. I have it all broken down into separate weeks so I can see how much I am averaging a week as well. It might sound funny but knowing that when I get back, I will be able to pull the dry eraser marker down and write down my miles for each walk gets me out the door most days. 
So what gets you out the door? How are you doing on getting 30 miles in November??



2 thoughts on “How to Make a Walk Fun

  1. These are great tips! I agree with all of them. Taking my dog with me makes it much more interesting and she LOVES it when we go on a new route. 🙂 New smells!

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