I Walk The Farm..

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For three months now, I’ve spent five days a week walking 4 miles a day on the farm.  It takes me about 58 to 68 minutes and I’ve lost about 25 pounds.  I feel enormously better and I’ve beaten back the need for one of three hypertension medicines I take.  Two more to go..

For some of you this is such basic stuff, and I apologize for making obvious observations, but I never got the “physical activity” gene.  Even though I grew up loving golf and running and tennis, I never really defined myself by them and so, day to day, physical activity just seemed like an elective course, not one of those required for graduation.

In order to keep this routine on trips to see friends, I walked Marina Del Rey and Doheney State Beach recently.  Mary and I even walked the Las Vegas strip.  (Just traversing an intersection there, with staircases and bridges, is at least a half mile.)

There is a loveable boredom in the thing, which might explain why it didn’t seem important to me early in my life.  Walk. Sweat. Concentrate on your feet, depressions in the road, sprinklers.

I found myself doing odd math.  “This is the second of three major hills I must walk today,” or “I will only walk this flat stretch one more time today, and the, at the end of that, I will have coffee and email,” or “the lower half of the figure 8 loop is 0.4 miles, so I must be at 2.88 right now..”

I even memorized the first three Psalms, and then took to listening to the Ventures.  When you are walking by the strawberry fields, to the theme from Hawaii 5-0 or “Walk, Don’t Run” it makes the morning feel like some high level espionage mission.  I’m not just walking.  I’m on a mission to save the world.

“You look better,” a friend told me.

The truth is, folks, we could all die tomorrow.
But, in the meantime, it’s good to get out in the morning wind and put one foot in front of the other.  Your footprint during the last lap has been over-planted by a bear’s paw.

Come and get me.  We live while we live.

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This post was written by Jim Riley

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