Monday, April 12, 2010

Walking the Walk

Just a couple of weeks ago, I snapped this shot of the daffodils coming up; today, they are past the full bloom point and making room for the tulips.  Spring is finally here in Ohio!  And spring is the very nicest time for a walk.

Today, I walked the 1.6 miles (3.2 miles round trip) to my part-time job as a local college administrator.  It was a warm day with a cool breeze, and I loved the chance to destress before going from job to job to job.  What a change from the days when I go straight from my Hilltop Communications desk to my college office to an evening commitment. 

Walking to work sounds like just the kind of granola-crunchy enviro-move that I shy away from.  Most of the time, I think of it as something akin to composting toilets:  fine, if you're into that kind of thing, but maybe not for me.  However, the fact that I now have a very local job suddenly made walking to work seem not just do-able but actually silly not to do.

My goal is to walk to work at least one day a week as long as it is not opressively hot (that is, asthma/allergy weather for those of us in the Midwest) or oppressively cold.  I'm going to burn a few calories and release a few endorphins while avoiding putting miles on the car or emissions in the atmosphere.  I know not everyone lives in an environment that allows a walk to work or on an errand, but for those who do, will you join me on my quest? 

The Analysis

Fast:  Just the opposite, actually.  My walk took me a half hour each way, while driving takes about five minutes from garage to parking space.

Cheap:  My walk gave me time to do the math:  My car gets about 24 MPG, and I covered 3.2 miles today.  Walking saved me 1/8 of a gallon of gas, or $0.23 at the most recent local price of $1.86 a gallon.  However, if you have been following me, you know I'll gladly spend an hour of work to save $0.39 a month, so a quarter a week is looking pretty good right now.

Good:  Too often, we have to rush here and there, and then we read advice to "take a 20 minute walk after dinner."  Walking to go nowhere makes me crazy; walking to go to work seems productive to me, and I got exercise and did something small that was good for my budget, my car, and the environment.  I'll take it, on a lovely spring day.

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