Wednesday, March 25, 2015

Cardio: the walking edition

That is right. First cardio topic is a simple but effective starting point towards fitness of epic proportions.

I started with walking. Well, it went exactly like this: ooo look a 5k charity walk that company is taking part in. I don't work that day. *signs up* Oh, I wonder if I can walk 5k without taking forever.
First walk proved I could in an hour. Then thought I should try walking a couple days a week. Before I knew it, I was walking almost every single day with just the rare day where I didn't walk a couple of miles (not counting work). Later when the weather turned colder, I moved into the gym and after lifting weights would walk on the treadmill for about 30 minutes as my cool down.

For weight loss, the main approach is usually going to be looking at food, also known as calories in versus calories out. However, for fitness in general, walking is a great starting point and a form of cardio many people can do. A fair number of people have seen successful results by just incorporating walks into their routine in order to move from sedentary to a move active lifestyle.

I don't know all the statistics and there are some who will find walking a challenge or it can be boring for others, but here are some links that discuss walking and some benefits.

Some useful links about walking:

The Fiction Side:
Now for the fiction part of this topic. Walking is also something characters often do in stories, maybe even a little too much in certain genres. The characters go from comfort in their homes to running away or to somewhere with limited means of transportation, which leads to them walking for many many days. It's something I'm guilty of in one of my fantasy series, that I will admit. It's a challenge if building a world where they don't have technology that provides other sources of transportation and don't want to deal with the details of other options like horses.

In my series I started during nanowrimo 2012 when I got 165k, the characters do a fair amount of walking. They start off with needing to run away and in the throws of danger, it's more of a need to move and move quick without many options. Later as they travel it becomes monotonous and I try to include ways to give the characters breaks because weeks of walking every day does seem a bit unrealistic. Still, they probably do more walking than one should and I have to include problems that would induce or else it will be completely unrealistic.

I feel for my characters, that is for sure. Since walking, lifting, now C25K and working where I'm on my feet all shift, my feet aren't very happy with me. The characters endure a lot even if it's small nuisances like achy feet in order for their story to be told.

Do you walk?
How much walking do your characters endure?

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