Why Getting out Walking is Great for Internal Exploration too.

Heather Waring


It was a cool and grey morning. I was tired after a full weekend that culminated in a lazy bank holiday Monday spent recovering from a belated birthday party the night before. It had been great fun but a lot of fizz had been consumed and I had been a little fragile the day after. I didn’t really want to walk …….

In years past, I would have given in, but here I was all dressed in my gear and ready to go. I still procrastinated though, mulling over a couple of family issues that were eating away and making me feel annoyed and frustrated. The time was ticking away and I had loads to do. Perhaps I’d just do my yoga instead?

Something kept me on the walking though and I knew it would be good for me. My body needed this ……. so I left, 20 minutes later than planned, but I got out there.

Usually I have an idea in mind as to where I am going but today, at the gate, I hesitated and then I turned left and kept on, along the streets. I was feeling grey like the weather and the grey streets seemed fitting. My head was heavy. I was sad, hurt, angry and as I walked I held conversations in my head. As I walked, actually I was pounding the pavements now, I went through scenarios, I questioned, I rewound.

I was in automatic mode, just going through the paces, one step in front of another, moving at speed and fat burning at a pace I often have to be so much more conscious about. 

I had been working through my emotions, beating some of it out as I might choose to beat or pound a pillow or cushion.

Before I knew it, I was about half way round this particular route and I’d only left 15 minutes ago. I had noticed nothing at all. The mindfulness of my many walks just didn’t exist because I was so in my head.

As I reached the half way point and turned home, I started to be a little more aware. I was actually feeling so much better.

The fast pace and the pounding of my feet on the hard grey ground had allowed me to work through what was going on in my head. I had been working through my emotions, beating some of it out as I might choose to beat or pound a pillow or cushion.  The focus on my thoughts had been rather lazer like and without realising it consciously, because of course my subconscious knew what was happening, I had chosen a simple path that needed less attention making the staying in my head so much easier.

I often talk about taking your problems out for a walk and it really works. The rhythm of walking, of moving and of pace and pounding allows the negativity to be worked through, that’s the more physical side;  the fresh air allows the fuzziness to be worked through too, like clearing cobwebs and being in space, I believe, creates space in your head, in your mind. There are less distractions so you have that physical and mental space and in taking yourself away from an environment or from people, who may have caused the angst and stress in the first place, it’s easier to think clearly.

I came back feeling calmer, I had slowed down – the pace on the return half wasn’t as fast or frenetic and the physical workout had me full of energy.

Not a bad way to start the day.

Walking brings us so many mental and physical benefits and it’s one of the easiest activities to fit into your every day. If you’d like to get more tips about how walking can help you why not get our newsletter which comes out twice a month as it updates you on what’s going on and sends you info on all aspects of walking. Email at heather@womenwalkingwomentalking.com and put “Please add me to your newsletter” as the subject line. You can cut and paste from here. Those in my community are the first to know about events and new programmes, get a chance to try out things at testing stage and get discounts too. 

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