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Tuesday, 31 January 2012

Day 31 We start walking30 again tomorrow!!

Memorable walks with Terra Nova in the school yard

Day 31 We start walking30 again tomorrow!!

Today we had a great walk around the University with a crowd of Walk On Strong walkers ... it was warm and the footing was great ... who knows what tomorrow will hold but today was a wonderful day for walking30 or more.
If you are joining us tomorrow for Day 1 of the February walk30 challenge you might want to do a few measurements ( like your waist size) or maybe your weight  ... so that you can see if walking30 every day for the next 29 days make a difference in your physical body.  I wish I had done that when I started 92 days ago because I am sure that it has made a difference in the way my jeans are fitting. More importantly I feel good and when I go for a walk30 it clears my head and things just seem a little more calm in the world.

Here is hoping that you join us or continue walking30 into February!
Walk On Strong,

Monday, 30 January 2012

Day 30 Walk30 begins again February 1st!

                    Get ready for the main event ... walk30

           Day 30    Walk30 begins again February 1st! 
                             Walk A Half Marathon a Week!

Well it is time again to commit or to recommit to walking30.  Every month we begin again with Day one but all of those months add up. Today will mark my 91st day in a row walking30!! and I will recommit to starting on day one again on Wednesday February 1st. 

Walking30 is just something that gets done every single day and I wake up every morning knowing that I will walk at least 30 minutes that day ... the question is simply when will it happen today? That doesn't mean it is always easy to fit in but somehow it is becoming a habit and that feels good!
It all begins with a commitment to yourself to take the first step out the door on Wednesday ... please come out and join the walk30 crowd.
If you decide to commit please send me an email a comment or an email to walkonstrong@gmail.com and let me know that you are on board for February.   If you have been walking30 all along send along an email to let me know that you are recommitting.  
Some of you are walking a Marathon a Week or a walk60 every day ... if you would like to join that group it is always an option.

No matter what you do ... Walk On Strong!!

Sunday, 29 January 2012

Day 29 A Sunday walk30

Day 29 A Sunday walk30

Today was just a slow moving Sunday ... just the way we like them.  The funny thing was that the day seemed to SLIP away 
( literally when my vehicle went on a slid unexpectedly this afternoon) and my walk30 wasn't happening.  The weather was really challenging today so a change of plan from the neighborhood walk was in order. I had to do a bit of shopping so just before dinner I did a 20  minute mall walk and then I literally walked around the outside of the mall to finish off.  Sometimes we just have to be creative.
The first of February is just a few days away and if you haven't been out to do your daily walk30's with us I invite you to join us on Wednesday for Day One and as a special introductory month February is only 29 days long! SO for next month only you will be walking 30 minutes a day for 29 days ... WHAT A DEAL!
Come and join us!
Walk On Strong,

Saturday, 28 January 2012

Day 28 Slip Sliding Away

Sarah and Annie

The after walk breakfast at Seven Shores

Day 28 Slip Sliding Away

OMG!  The ice was so tricky this morning.  We had the deadly combination of a fast freeze and a layer of light snow that camouflaged the ice below.  It was so icy this morning that a few of our walkers fell before they even arrived for the walk.  These conditions resulted in many near falls on the trial and more than a half dozen real tumbles ... yikes!
We cut our 5 K a little short and headed to breakfast at Seven Shores ... that was the best part. 
My daughter came out this morning with us and met many of our walking regulars ... it was definitely a day to rememeber.
I hope your walk30 was without any mishaps!
Walk On Strong,

Friday, 27 January 2012

Day 27 Walking in the neighborhood

Day 27 Walking in the neighbourhood
My daughter Sarah is visiting from Northern Ontario this weekend! I will get her out for a walk30 tomorrow

Some days it is just easier to just walk out the door in the neighbourhood ... fortunately we have a few destinations close to us that are well worth the walk ... one of them is Carousel Clothing Store
one of Kitchener's finest consignment shops! They are having a BOGO sale this weekend so I decided that the perfect walk30 would be out to shop and back home again and .... I was right ... I got a new (to me) walking coat. 
If you have some time this weekend for browsing in a great store you will find some amazing bargains to be had.
72 Saint Leger Street  Kitchener, ON N2H 6R4
Hope you had a great walk30!


Thursday, 26 January 2012

Day 26 A memorable walk

 Day 26 A memorable walk!

I was reading the Walking to Retirement blog today and Scott was talking about star gazing and an amazing app that helps to identify the constellations in the nights skies.  That had me reminiscing.  
We used to live in a very small community in Northern Alberta (many years ago) ... a village called Sangudo north of Edmonton.   The skies at night were so incredible because there was virtually no light pollution.   Winter provided the best show and the northern lights were frequent and brilliant. 
 The only difficulty was that in the summer we were so far north that there was actually some light in the sky until the morning.  This also brings back memories of a one walk that we did not volunteer to do when our car broke down on the way home to our little house in the country ... it was in the summer and we had just left a party at a friends home in the village and headed out of town and it was very late (or early in the a.m.).  Just outside of town on the back road that would eventually lead to our house the car just quit and we decided we would just walk home for a lark ... bad idea ... I was wearing my skimpy summer shoes and it was a very long walk on a dirt gravel road. Hours later at about 4 a.m. we arrived home sore and tired.  What can I say ... we were young!
Today's walk30 was a lot less stressful ... thank goodness.
Walk On Strong! 

Wednesday, 25 January 2012

Day 25 Waterloo Region Walks!

A memorable walk in Owen Sound ... Bruce Trail

Day 25 Waterloo Region Walks!
Today was an amazing day!  Dave and I were the keynote speakers at a one day conference for Waterloo Region Walks.  There were lots of groups represented today and the intention is to create a body that will promote walking in the region and come together to make our community more walkable.
We heard from various speakers and I think that everyone left with a feeling that the Region is on board in promoting and supporting us in making things happen.
Congratulations to Muriel and Jillian ... it was a great day and you have inspired us! Well done!
We had a walk30 during our lunch hour through the Doon Heritage Village.
The day finished with my Chance to Dance class ... PERFECT!
Walk On Strong!
Febrruary first is coming ... join the Walk30 Challenge.

Tuesday, 24 January 2012

Day 24 Motivation to take the stairs

Day 24 Motivation to take the stairs
Some days it just takes something FUN to get you out the door or in this case up the stairs.  I was just wandering around a few fitness blogs and ran across this video that I have seen before and just loved!!
If you haven't come across it yet I know it will get you thinking about adding more fun to your day.
Hope you had a great walk30 today and if you haven't started yet ... February first is a great time to begin ... walk 30 for 30 (29 in February!).

Monday, 23 January 2012

Day 23 Minds in Motion K W Walking Classic

Walking back from a great breakfast on a Saturday morning

Day 23 Minds in Motion K W Walking Classic
I am not sure that everyone knows this but I am the Co-chair and one of the founders of the K W Walking Classic.  Today was one of our Central Committee Meetings and there is a lot to think about in preparing for meeting with this committee of dynamic individuals.  It is a great group and the race is a true reflection of the talented and passionate people who give of their time to put this race on the map each year. We have the only race that is strictly for walkers that has all the bling of a first rate running race and we do it all to raise funds to support individuals who are recovering from mental illness.    Check it out at www.kwwalkingclassic.com

Today my only concern was to find the time to get out and walk30.  Fortunately one of the members of my walking group lives around the corner from me and called to see if I would walk30 with her. 
First we walked Annie around the block and then we continued on to complete our 30 minute trek!!
Thank goodness for walk30 friends ... thanks Cynthia!
Walk On Strong!

Sunday, 22 January 2012

Day 22 Looking forward to a talk30 on Wednesday!

 A memorable walk in the country (2010) ... we found Mighty Mouse!

Day 22 Looking forward to a Talk30 on Wednesday!
 This week Dave and I are the keynote speakers for a one day conference on Wednesday that is being hosted by the Region of Waterloo.  It is an all day event with a walk30 at lunch time that Dave and I will lead.
The focus for the conference is to bring  people together who are interested in walking, have walking and hiking clubs or have an interest in promoting walking in our region.  It is hoped that as a result of this endeavour we will have started the ball rolling toward an organization that will represent all those walking initiatives that are on going in our community. It will also enable us to share information and have more impact on our community health though walking promotion as a group.

Some of our Walk On Strong members are attending on Wednesday and we are going to promote the Minds in Motion K W Walking Classic at this event too.  I will let you know how the event went in a future blog.
                                Weekly Walking News
Thursday night's WOS Workshops are at the Activa Sportsplex.  We will meet you there at 6:30 p.m.   It is week 3 and we will be working technique and intervals ... we will meet you on the track warming up!

Free Weekly Walks with WOS  meet at the Waterloo Public Square this week and every week
Tuesday at 6:30 p.m for a 5 K walk with Dave
Saturday at 8 a.m. for a 12 K walk With Dave
Saturday at 9 a.m. for a 5 K walk with Sue
And join us at the Seven Shores Cafe for coffee and breakfast afterward!!
Come and join the walk30 Challenge on February 1st ... walk for 30 minutes for 30 days in a row ( unless it is February for only 29 in 2012). It is time to start thinking about it!

Hope you had a great walk30 today.

Saturday, 21 January 2012

Day 21 A great day for 10 K

      A sunny Saturday walk in the woods!
Day 21 A great day for 10 K
It was my turn to lead the 8 am walk today and it was a sunny minus 10 when I headed to the Waterloo Public Square to meet the group.  One of our favorite walks takes us through no less that 3 wooded trails in and around Uptown Waterloo.  The saving grace for a Saturday walk ... or any day is the abundance of sun and lack of wind.  It is amazing how quickly you warm up ... a great day for a walk. 
Thanks to everyone who came out this morning for the early and the later walk!  If you live in Waterloo Region or you are visiting please come and join us!!
Hope you had a sunny walk30 where ever you are!
Walk On Strong .... Sue

Friday, 20 January 2012

Day 20 A scenic walk30

Memorable snowy walk ... Say cheese!

Day 20 A scenic walk30
A quick update today ... Dave and I walked30 out at the Doon Heritage Village site off Homer Watson.  Next week we will be speaking at a one day conference that will bring together walkers from all over Waterloo Region in the hopes of creating a greater walking community that will work together to promote walking as a healthy way to live and thrive.  We will be leading a walk30 at noon on Wednesday so we were planning our route.  It is still chilly but it was a great scenic walk.  Hope you had a wonderful walk30 today!
Walk On Strong!

Thursday, 19 January 2012

Day 19 Snow, snow ,snow

Annie discovers the snow!

Day 19 Snow, snow, snow
Today was the first really significant snow fall of the winter!   Normally here in southern Ontario we have had many snow storms by mid January. People are talking about the weather a lot these days because winter is just not making an appearance and it makes some of us uneasy. The snow is something we take for granted, it cleans up the landscape, decorates the trees and makes Canada ... well Canada.  So for today we have winter and I enjoyed it with our puppy who seems to be a BIG fan of the snow!
Walk On Strong ... in the snow!

Wednesday, 18 January 2012

Day 18 One of my heros

My friend Uwe Harders and  his guide dog Zoolu (right) in New York

Day 18  My walk30 today is in honor of the home coming of my good friend Uwe and his new guide dog Zoolu.  I have some incredible friends and for that I am so grateful.  One of the most amazing is Uwe Harders.   Uwe  is blind and he has had four ( that I am aware of) guide dogs that he has trained and shared his life with over many years.  Just this past December he lost his last guide dog Garity very unexpectedly ... a beautiful Shepard that will be deeply missed by all who knew him. 
Uwe is my hero for many reasons and I would have to blog for a week or two to tell you all of them.
Today he is my hero because he is such a model of bravery.  I can not imagine the courage it must have taken to go to the United States and connect with a new guide dog to begin the intense three week training that is required just to begin this relationship.  In this picture he is walking with Zoolu on the streets of New York as the final test before heading home to Owen Sound Ontario.

Most of us take for granted that we can just head out the door and do our walk30 without assistance or even thinking twice about it. Today I am thinking of Uwe and his new guide dog and how happy I am that they are back home safe and sound.  Here is to all of the walk30's they will do together and I know there will be many!
I can't wait to meet Zoolu!!
Walk On Strong ...all!

Tuesday, 17 January 2012

Day 17 An interesting walk30 tonight!

Memorable walks ... Walking in Tuscany with my friend Lynda.

Day 17  An interesting walk30 tonight!
I am sitting at my Mac and I am listening to the wind howl outside of the window. It is almost 11 p.m.   
Earlier today it was pouring and not looking like our optimal weather for the Walk On Strong group this evening. 
When we left the house at 6:15 it had stopped raining and was about 4 degrees above Centigrade ... not bad ... not freezing. 

We met a group of hearty walkers in the mall and set out onto the wet streets ... as we moved along the wind came up and the air filled with ice crystals that were like little needles hitting my face ... and sticking to my glasses.  By the time we turned around at about to head back the wet streets were extremely icy and not easy to stay upright on. The temperature has gone from plus 4 to minus 4 and now they are calling for snow squalls.

To say we are having an unusual winter this year would be an understatement ... but we still manage to get our walk30s in ... and enjoy the variety ... as long as we stay on our feet!
Hope you had a less eventful walk30!
Walk On Strong,

Monday, 16 January 2012

Day 16 Art's Birthday and he's 91!

This is from the photo booth on my mac! Carnival mirror picture!

Me and my cartoon Dad
Day 16
Art's Birthday and he's 91!
Hi there everyone ... today is a very special day for our family because my Dad turns 91 today!
Lucky me to have such great genes!
The coolest thing about my Dad is that he has always been active and has gone to the gym a few days a week up until just recently.  Now he is talking about getting back into his regular schedule at the sportsplex across the street from where he and my Mom live (independently) in Calgary.

So the absolute coolest thing is that at 91 my Dad  is doing the same thing that we all are ... getting back at what we need to do to get active again.  We are always getting back into whatever we need to do to stay fit, keep our weight down or just have a better quality of life.  That is what lfe is all about now, in 20 years and when we are (hopefully) 91!
 SO don't get discouraged by always feeling that you have let yourself down by not following your plan, you can always start again ... especially if what you want to do is get out the door for 30 minutes a day ... you can start today or wait until February 1st.
I am going to add the weekly news here for the Walk On Strong walkers

Thursday night's WOS Workshops are at the Activa Sportsplex.  We will meet you there at 6:30 p.m. If you would like to join us we are only starting week 2 and would love to have more members.

Free Weekly Walks with WOS  meet at the Waterloo Public Square this week and every week
Tuesday at 6:30 p.m for a 5 K walk with Dave and Sue
Saturday at 8 a.m. for a 10 K walk With Sue
Saturday at 9 a.m. for a 5 K walk with Dave
And join us at the Seven Shores Cafe for coffee and breakfast afterward!!

Dave and I just got back from our walk30 through the woods ... it's warm again and I think we should just enjoy it ... have a great one!
Walk On Strong,
Sue and Dave

Sunday, 15 January 2012

Day 15 What difference does walking every day make?

Walking should be a ton of fun... this was at the 
half way point at the Disney Marathon 2010

Day 15 What difference does walking every day make?
I wanted to share this blog with everyone in hopes that it will help us to understand what adding a little more muscle to our walking technique and increasing consistency will do for us.  We all wonder at times why we are not feeling as much benefit as we would like to from our walking endeavors.  You can derive more bang for your fitness buck by simply becoming aware of and using more of your muscle groups when you are out there.  At first you really have to think about your body, how it feels and what it is doing to change your walking habits. But you also have to make it a priority and a habit.
Many of you know that I have started a daily habit of walking 30 minutes ( or more) every singe day ( 21K or a half marathon a week as a minimum).   I hope to encourage others toward the same daily goal by inviting them to the Walk30 Challenge  ... 30 minutes every day for 30 days ... this challenge begins again on the first of every month.  You can start the Challenge any time but the first always seems like a good time to start anything, just like Mondays for diets!
Walking every day since November first I have now completed 76 days in a row of walking30 (plus). Do I notice a difference?
- I am getting out the door every day with much less reluctance.
- I actually am taking it for granted that it will happen and planning my day around my walk rather than the other way around.
- I feel stronger and have more stamina in my walks and in my day to day life
- My body feels firmer too!
On Saturday I as walking toward the walking group in the mall where we meet and someone said " you have lost weight haven't you?" This really surprised me because I actually put on about 5 lbs over Christmas.  Then it occurred to me that I have toned through this consistent habit of walking30 every day. YIPEE!
Hope you walk30 with me!
Walk On Strong,

Saturday, 14 January 2012

Day 14 Power Walking Lesson #2

It all begins with a strong core and the arms working to propel you forward

Day 14 Power Walking Lesson #2
Walking30 this morning was a chilling experience but ... as we all know ... the more you walk30 the warmer you get.
I hope that you have been implementing the ideas from Lesson One and that you have started walking taller and feeling your core strengthen as you tighten your butt and lengthen your torso.
Next Now you are ready to get those arms up and helping you to power along.  
For some unknown reason it seems that people have a difficult time lifting up there arms in support of and strengthening their forward movement.  Let's just say that "it looks a little goofy" to see a walker powering along with their arms pumping. The bottom line here is that you will have to get over feeling 'goofy' if you want to add upper body strength and momentum to your walk. 
Lifting your arms to a 90 degree angle and moving your hands from your hip to the center chest height will engage muscles in the back of the arms (triceps) and it also activates the back muscles (lats) that will fire in support of your upper body.
The strength with which you pull your arm back using those triceps has a direct connection to momentum forward. The faster you move those arms the faster you feet will follow.

For the next few weeks try getting those arms up and in action. Keep your elbows in close to your body.  What does it feel like? Probably a bit weird ... you are right on track!  Remember it will take weeks of consistent practice to begin to feel natural walking along with your arms up and in place.
You are going to get more bang for your walk30 effort by using those extra muscles every time you head out the door!
More to come ... in the meantime ...Walk on Strong with your head high and your arms in place.

Friday, 13 January 2012

Day 13 and it is Friday too!

A memorable walk with our Newfoundland Terra Nova

Day 13 and it is Friday too!!
The winter weather has definitely set in and it is a chilly minus 6 C right now ... it is chilly.  Dave and I decided to do a destination walk tonight to Casey's Restaurant which is a good 20 minute walk one way from where we parked the car. We were trying to figure out a destination that was a good walking distance but not too far from home and couldn't come up with anything.  We finally decided that if we just drove toward our destination we would be a walkable distance for tonight.  That being said it was really, really cold and windy on the way and back ... but we survived and felt good getting out instead of planting ourselves in front of the TV.
I am going to try to get Power Walking Lesson #2 out the tomorrow ... so watch out for it! Come join us tomorrow for a very chilly 14K walk at 8 a.m. or a shorter chilly walk at 9 a.m. ( maybe 6 K)
and ... Walk On Strong!

Thursday, 12 January 2012

Day 12 Walk On Strong worshop starts today

                         Walk On Strong with Sue and Dave

Day 12 Walk On Strong worshop starts today

It is always a great day when we start the WOS Power Walking workshops.  We have two groups that we train... the Intro to Power Walking group that focuses on power walking technique and the Personal Best group that attempts to assist people in achieving their individual goals not matter what they might be.
Some of our walkers are focused on races but most are simply wanting to create a routine of fitness in their lives ... not always easily achieved on our own.   Everyone has individual goals but they all lead us to the same ultimate goal of a healthier existence both physically and mentally.
Dave and I are so incredibly blessed with the opportunity to meet so many incredible people through the coaching we do through Walk On Strong.
One of the best Walk30s is with the Thursday night workshop group.
May you be so blessed with wonderful company on your walk30 today.
Walk On Strong,

Wednesday, 11 January 2012

Day 11 Walk 30 and Dance80

Chance to Dance

Day 11 Walk 30 and Dance80
Today I was excited and busy getting ready for the dance class that I lead here in Kitchener.  I have been teaching A Chance To Dance for a few years now and the class was on hold during the fall so today was the first class in six months.  This afternoon I was fussing over details and making sure that I had everything packed to go ... a long checklist.  So I decided to calm down on a walk30 and that did the trick.  Walking just gives me space, time and a chance to reflect,
The class was AWESOME and it is so good to be back on the dance floor ... another great stress buster.
If anyone is interested you can check out info about the class at www.walkonstrong.com and just hit the Chance to Dance link on the menu at the top of the home page.
Elaine was asking if I had any advice about walking with a cold.  Actually it's a good thing to get out there when you have a cold as long as you don't have any flu symptoms or a fever.  Exercise is never a good idea if you are really feverish.  If you do go out there be sure to have lots of layers and something around your neck ... sometimes the fresh air will really help clear your sinuses.  Hope your feeling better soon.
If you love art and the country around Owen Sound Ontario .... you have to check out Elaine's blog You will be glad you did!
Hope your walk30's rocked!
Walk On Strong,

Tuesday, 10 January 2012

Day 10 Just an easy predictable walk30

Another easy walk was last March through the streets of Paris!!

Day 10 walk30 
Tonight we met with the Walk On Strong group once again at the Waterloo Public Square for one of our weekly walks.  
The Square was busy with skaters and families out for a little activity.  We had a large group out to walk tonight.  It was a warm winter day once again and the perfect night for a walk30 .  
We decided to do the K W Walking Classic 5 K route.  
The sidewalks were clear of snow and ice and the company was out standing.  It is absolutely incredible how fast the kms fly when you are talking your way along.
Sometimes getting a walk30 into my day is a breeze ... hope you had a great one!
Walk On Strong!

Monday, 9 January 2012

Day 9 walk30 for 30 days ... a habit could be born

Day 9  Walk 30 minutes a day for 30 days ... and a habit could be born

I saw this video  on one of the blogs I follow called Walking to Retirement by Scott.
The idea here at walk30 is to walk for 30 minutes a day for 30 days in a row and then hopefully start all over again at the beginning of the next month. We keep starting all over again on day one of every month ... it gives everyone a way to join in whenever they stumble upon this blog or even to start all over when ever the spirit strikes. Everyone who keeps on walking will have a different total if they keep walking ( I started this on November 1 so my personal day total is 70 days in row ... as of today).
It isn't and easy thing to create new healthy habits but a month is somewhat magical in helping us toward the establishment of a routine.
 Hope you enjoy the video ... and join us in a walk30.

Today was one of those days that found my busy and running around ... putting off my walk30.  I had planned to walk to a meeting at 6:30 and then walk home.  Things got out of control and we ended up driving to the meeting. Instead of hopping in the car I just walked home and then a few times around the block and ... DONE.
Some days are just tougher than others.
Do you ever have a tough time getting out the door?  How do you get your walk30 in when it seems almost impossible?
If you have ideas just leave a comment or email me at:
Until tomorrow ... Walk On Strong,

Sunday, 8 January 2012

Day 8 A beautiful day and a long walk.

Day 8 
A beautiful day and a long walk.
Today was a sunny day just around zero and I decided just to set off for a walk30.  Sunday is a great day to just get out there and when there is a day like today to be had you have to take advantage.
Just a short blog today to promote the virtues of taking advantage of a warm sunny day ... nothing complicated at all.
I am beginning to realize that getting out there is becoming easier with every walk30.
Walk On Strong!

Friday's twilight walk

Saturday, 7 January 2012

Day 7 and a Half Marathon finished for this week!!

Toys R Us!! More puppy pictures.

Day 7 and a Half Marathon finished for this week!!
Congratulations ... you did it ... every 7 days you can rack up a half marathon or more if you tend to get carried away and walk more than 30 minutes. That is the trick by the way.   A walk30 usually equals 3 Kilometers ( or more if you are walking really fast) and 3K times 7 days is 21K and that is a HALF MARATHON! 
(13 miles for those of you in the USA)

This morning I was leading the 12 K walk with our Walk On Strong group and it was a glorious morning ... the k's went zipping by and before we knew it we were enjoying a great cup of coffee and breakfast at the new location for Seven Shores Urban Cafe. Yumm!

Our snow is almost gone again and it has warmed up considerably.  I have decided to just enjoy it and walk more on these balmy days.
Another Annie puppy picture today ... what can I say ... we are taking a lot of them!
Hope you are practicing your Power Walking lesson #1 technique and strengthening your core ... next week we will move on to lesson #2.  It takes approximately 6 weeks to make a new technique a habit if you put it into practice every time you go out walking.  So remind yourself to get taller, lift your chin and become aware of your strong core every time you come to a corner.   Use what ever cue you need to so that you remember to walk tall and strong. 
Check out yesterday's blog for more details if you missed it.
Have fun and Walk On Strong!

Friday, 6 January 2012

Walk30 Day 6 Power Walking Lesson # 1

YES Power Walking can be fun!!

              Walk30 Day 6 Power Walking Lesson # 1

People often ask me about Power Walking and what makes it different from ... walking.  I often begin my explanation by talking about what power walking isn't. 
Power walking isn't just a leisure walk .. the way we walk around in the world when we aren't rushed or in a hurry.
Power walking isn't just walking a little faster doing the same kind of walking that gets you from here to the car or around the block.
Power walking isn't race walking which requires the utmost in training and technique. Not that there is anything wrong with race walking ... there are power walkers who move on to become race walkers but most people find that they can achieve incredible results and many physical and mental health benefits by using power walking technique alone.
So what IS power walking? Lesson ONE
Power walking is putting more muscle and technique into your walk so that you can become stronger and go faster.
Let's start with the first thing we talk about as we coach our Intro to Power walking course.
Stand tall and focus on lifting your head and getting your body into alignment. We talk about many messages or thoughts we can repeat while walking that can help us to create a strong core as we move along. 
Power walking is about engaging more musles while you are walking. This  engagement of the core muscles while you walk will burn more calories during your workout and encourage your body to actually continue to burn calories after you stop walking. We start with the muscles that keep us upright.
What can you do to engage the 'girdle muscles'? 
First, stand tall, lift your head and place your finger tips on your hip bones at your sides. Next place your thumbs on the bottom of you rib cage. Stand as tall as you can and create as much room between your thumb and your fingers as possible ... pulling your ribs away from your hip bones.
Now, to show you the contrast ....  collapse and slump forward while still keeping you fingers and thumbs in position ... if you are like me you will notice that you have created a ring of bulge at your waist ( it is a bit bigger than before Christmas) ... that doesn't feel good.  If you create that distance (hip to rib) and at the same time tighten the butt which should bring your pelvis under and to a nice neutral position while you walk ... you are working your core and looking about 10 lbs lighter at the same time.
Try it in a mirror ... you will be surprised!
That is the first step to becoming a power walker but it isn't the last by far... stay tuned for lesson #2 and beyond. 
In the meantime try to stand tall and create that distance and length in your torso ... it will make a difference.
I did a neighborhood walk30 at twilight tonight and it was beautiful ... when I get the pictures out of my camera I will post them. 
Hope you had an awesome walk30 today.
Walk On Strong!

Thursday, 5 January 2012

January 5 ... Day 5 Walking the puppy

Annie after her first walk30 ... a little tired.

Day 5 Walking the puppy Annie
Well I am not sure that I can count Annie's first walk as a walk30. It was definitely 30 minutes or more but we only made it around the block.
Some day I will be able to go for a challenging walk30 with her but it won't be for a little while yet.
Thank goodness for our 4 legged family members ... they make it a little easier to get out the door for that walk.

Here's to many more walk30's with Annie .. and in the meantime I think I will head for a few hill repeats to make up for all the stops and starts on that first memorable walking adventure.
Walk On Strong!

Wednesday, 4 January 2012

Day 4 News about boosting your metabolism

In the winter it is best to find an indoor track to 
do your fastest intervals ... or outside 
when the path is clear of ice.

          Day 4 News about boosting your metabolism!
People we do power walking training with will tell you that Dave and I are always promoting intervals in their workshop sessions.   Simply put interval training is pushing your speed and energy output in timed or random intervals throughout your walk. 
We usually talk about starting with about 30 seconds of 'as fast as your can' walking and then recovering for 1 to 2 minutes or however long it takes to get your heart rate back to normal.  If you do four 30 second bursts in a walk30 you will get maximum calorie burn and boost your human growth hormone production. 
Going for you daily walk30 is great and offers many, many benefits ... no matter how fast you walk.  If you add some extra speed it will take your benefits and multiply them. Start with just a few and as you get stronger challenge yourself to longer periods of 'as fast as you can' walking in each session.  Just remember to always recover for at least twice the interval time period or more. The recovery is the secret key to building strength and endurance safely.
I just got an article about this in my email by Jillian Michaels a Biggest Loser trainer  here are the high lights regarding human growth hormone and its importance:
"In addition to these amazing feats, growth hormone helps your liver synthesize glucose, and it promotes gluconeogenesis, a really cool process that allows your body to create carbs out of protein. This helps you lose fat faster while providing your brain and other tissues with the energy they need.
As with so many other beneficial hormones, production of growth hormone declines with age, and many things we do speed the decline:
1. We deprive ourselves of good-quality sleep. Growth hormone is released in adults in an average of five pulses throughout the day, the largest of which happens during deep sleep. Shortchange yourself on sleep and you'll shortchange yourself on growth hormone.
2. We eat too many low-quality carbs. Refined carbs, such as those in white bread and white rice, keep our blood sugar and insulin levels high, which suppresses the release of growth hormone. Protein, on the other hand, can facilitate the release of higher levels of growth hormone.
3. We don't exercise enough. When you don't exercise and your muscles become insulin-resistant, you increase your level of circulating insulin, which further suppresses growth hormone. We need to get off our butts and capitalize on this incredibly healthy hormone! 

One surefire way we can turn our bodies into growth hormone factories is with intense exercise. During intense exercise, and especially during interval training, growth hormone encourages the body to use fat as its fuel instead of glucose. Not only does this help you burn fat while you exercise, but it stabilizes your blood glucose level so that you have the energy to keep exercising."
 For a look at the entire article check out this link:

I am off for my walk30 plus a few minutes and today I am going to do intervals!
Walk On Strong,

Tuesday, 3 January 2012


Our Newfoundland Terra Nova loved the winter ... she definitely had the right outfit!

Day 3    Walking30 in subzero temperatures requires more layers
Today it is the coldest day we have had all winter ... it is 16 below zero C and fortunately the wind cooperated and didn't blow.  We have been very spoiled this winter with almost every day being above zero and unusually warm.
Getting out there for a walk meant being sure that another layer, scarf, and heavier mitts were added to the attire.  Sometimes I can hardly believe that I am so very warm while walking30 in spite of the super cold temperatures.  There was a time, before my walking habit, when I really didn't like winter much. It seemed to be about hurrying from the car to the house or the nearest warm building ... now I know that if I dress for the weather I can enjoy almost anything it throws my way. I still don't love walking in torrential rain though! That is what indoor tracks are for.
So get out there and walk30 even on the coldest of days ... the bonus is that you are burning more calories keeping your body warm and moving through the snow.
Walk on Strong!

Monday, 2 January 2012

Day 2 It's all about the puppy!

Resolution Walkers! A wet one!

Day 2 
Well I might be able to walk30 but our new pup Annie is only doing a walk2 and being carried the rest of the way ... this will be a short blog because we are super busy with this new project.
This morning we got up at 7 a.m. ( with only one night time trip to the back yard at 4 a.m.) so we felt that we were lucky ... who knows what is ahead?!
I made sure that I got out the door around noon and walked over to a wonderful hill nearby. At the Resolution walk yesterday almost everyone in the group mentioned the hills ( there was a huge steep hill we had to do twice!) and many of us were feeling very strong on them. Adding hills to your walk30 is a very good idea .. they build strength, speed and definitely get your heart rate into the zone that we don't realize in our day to day walking.
Be sure to walk tall up those hills with your eyes on the horizon and take very small steps ... especially in this snowy, icy weather. Doing those hills will make you stronger and you will power past others in any event that has a hill or two!!
Walk On Strong ... keep on walking30!

Sunday, 1 January 2012

Day 1 again! Happy New Year and welcome Annie!

January Day 1 walk30
This has been a full day ... we walked the Running Room Resolution 5 K with the most amazing group of people and our family grew.  WOW!
Everyone came out in the rain for a 12 o'clock start time.  Dave and I would have understood if anyone had stayed home this morning.  Walking in the rain isn't always the most fun but there was a great turnout and everyone had fast times too ... well done!
The other big news of the day was our journey out into the country after the race to pick up a new member of our family ... Annie Lewis.
Annie Lewis
Our son Mike and Annie
 She is an 8 week old Newfoundland puppy and she is the cutest puppy in the world... and I do not exaggerate.  So our New Year has begun with a big change to our status quo and probably a lot of work ahead but somehow that all seems okay. You can ask me tomorrow though ... sleeping may be interrupted.
Having a dog makes Walking30 even better!
Walk On Strong!