Fast walkers, virtue, and fitness


I’ve written before about becoming a slow walker, becoming sensitive to all the boasts from friends about their walking speeds whenever ‘fast-walking=longevity’ makes the news, and feeling sorry that I was ever among their ranks, boasting of my fast walking ways and complaining about getting trapped behind slow walkers.

I’ve even stopped judging the ‘texting while walking crowd’. I always assumed that phone attention was making people slow, that if only they put away their g-damn phones they’d speed up, and now I know it isn’t so. Sometimes I check my messages while walking b/c I can at the speed I have to walk at.

Talk of step counts and walking speeds now sounds boastful to me. I know that people who talk this way aren’t boasting really. I know people don’t think they’re better than me because they walk more or walk faster.

I talk about cycling distances and speeds. I don’t think I’m morally superior for my cycling accomplishments. I don’t think people who don’t ride bikes are lazy. And yet, I’m getting a sense about why others might hear it in that way.

I think walking feels difference because almost everyone walks and it’s touted as the exercise for everyone. (And no, it’s not, not really.)

I do know I get more sympathy and understanding when I’m either wearing my knee brace or using a cane. I suspect without them people just think I’m lazy.

Yes, walking is wonderful. I miss it. But not everyone can walk for fitness. Not everyone can walk far or fast. We’re not worse people for walking slowly.

#ThingsIWishMyPastSelfDidNotSay

Blurry walkers on an autumn day

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