December 2, 2023

Before coming up with the first of my handful of New Year’s resolutions for 2022, I should have remembered the lyrics to “I’m Gonna Be (500 Miles)” accurately. In The Proclaimers’ classic, brothers Craig and Charlie Reid sing:

But I would walk 500 miles
And I would walk 500 more
Just to be the man who walks 1,000 miles
To fall down at your door

My first resolution for 2022 is to walk 500 miles this year. It’s pretty simple, really. That’s 1.37 miles walked every day this year, and that’s roughly 30 minutes at a moderate pace.

Notice I didn’t say run. I said walk. I might run some this year depending on the weather, how I feel, whether I’m preparing for a 5K or longer – my call. However, coming into my 52nd year on this planet, I’m mostly focused on long-term health and mobility.

I’ve written a lot about my back issues: here, here, here and here. I have a herniated disk at L5S1 as many people do. What’s worked for me is finding a chiropractor who practices holistically with the spirit of a coach. This will be my third full year going to see my chiropractor, and I haven’t felt a lick of real pain since after the first few months of visiting.

The other thing that has worked is to stay active. “Motion is lotion” is one of my favorite sayings. And mobility is cited by many scholars as being a predictor of longevity, and not just longevity – but quality longevity.

  • Can you climb a flight of stairs without exhaustion?
  • Can you get up off the floor without needing help?
  • And does it hurt when you do it?

I don’t have any resolution related to a certain weight, a number on a scale. No, I wanted a health goal that was much more in my control — and walking an average of 1.37 miles per day is something that I can do. It will require effort, but it also does not stress me out. With a modicum of discipline and a periodic reminder, this should be cake.

In fact, maybe I will get closer to The Proclaimers’ 1,000 miles than just 500.

For what it’s worth, I’ve done pretty good two days in to the new year:

Jan. 1, 2022: I walked 2.772 miles in 64 minutes.

Jan. 2, 2022: I walked 1.747 miles in 40 minutes.

Mostly, this is at a 2.5, 2.8 or 3.0 on the treadmill. One big flaw with my treadmill: no incline. I’ll get that rectified at some point or find a hill somewhere outside.

But that’s 4.519 miles in two days, a pace of roughly 825 miles for the year.

Maybe 1,000 miles isn’t too outlandish! I’ll keep you posted about my quest right here. Would appreciate a follow if you, too, are interested in topics of interest to connected folk over 50.

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