professional walker for hire

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Sunrise Shadow Legs

I just decided something, this morning, waiting for daylight so I can get my walk in before work. I’d much rather walk than work everyday.

Are there professional walking jobs? Maybe a mail carrier or dog walker? Are there other jobs where I could just be outside walking all day?

I have a friend who is a “world walker”. He walks across continents for a worthy cause near to his heart. His name is Colin Skinner and he has walked thousands of miles for Hospice awareness and many other causes. I admire him greatly. That is some dedicated walking.

I also recently watched the movie, A Walk In The Woods, which is the story of Bill Bryson’s trek on the Appalachian Trail. This also inspired me to start walking, and I wish, as a 60 year old woman, that I had the guts to make that trip.

I can’t imagine anything better than walking all day, camping under the stars and waking up to do it again. Traveling with just foot power must be an amazing feeling.

At the moment, I can’t just quit my job and walk away somewhere, but every time I do walk, I feel like it’s all I want to do. I’m not sure where this feeling will take me. Maybe nowhere, as realities and responsibilities keep me chained to one place, one task. And fear, real and imagined, holds me back too.

But maybe, someday, I’ll find a way to do a little long distance walking that’s not too dangerous or scary, and that won’t put me in financial ruin.

Until that day comes, I’ll do my daily practice of 10,000 steps and I’ll keep my eyes open for opportunities that might require a professional walker.

Photo by DLM

 

 

10,000 steps a day for life

It all started with a fitness tracker. That, and the fact that I just turned 60 and felt like I was wanderinimageg unknowingly into uncharted senior citizen territory.

What do I mean by that? Well, at the time I received my fitness tracker, I was thirty pounds overweight, extremely sedentary, and everything hurt. I couldn’t keep up with anyone. Not my kids, not my friends, and certainly not my athletic, toned younger sister.

It all started with a trip to NYC with my sister. Yes, she is a runner, triathlete, and body builder, but it didn’t matter. We were going to walk all over Manhattan. I couldn’t even come close to keeping up with her as we walked. My feet! My legs! Stiff, painful, slow, I measured my pack mule gait against her gazelle like stride and came up 10 feet behind her at all times, until she mercifully offered a taxi ride back to the hotel. Oh, the shame.

Then there was a trip to Costa Rica with my kids. Everyone walks in Costa Rica, and why not? The weather is beautiful, the scenery picturesque and mountainous. Again, like an old shuffling burro, I lagged behind, hot, tired and sad. And this time there were steep inclines. I just couldn’t keep up.

My feet were a constant problem. So much pain. Finally I got the hint. At 60, unless I did something about this physical decline, it was going to pick up speed until I woke up one day, hunched and unable to navigate across a room without a walker.

It was then that I decided to use the fitness tracker that my kids had given me for Christmas, and just start walking 10,000 steps a day. Everyone from the Surgeon General to my very own doctor had been recommending that for a very long time, so I decided to begin.

It was a non-descript day, Tuesday, May 10th of this year that I rolled out of bed early one morning and went for my first walk. I saw the sunrise, and I was astounded. Sunrises had been happening everyday of my life, why haven’t I seen more of them?

It took a large commitment to reach 10,000 steps that day. My morning walk gave me 4,700 steps. So, I walked on the treadmill at work (I work for a very health conscious company) and then had to finish up with a walk after dinner. 10,000 steps is no joke.
The next morning, I did it all over again. Another beautiful sunrise and fresh air, treadmill at work, and after dinner walk. I loved it. But my body did not.

By day three, my ankles were killing me, my feet hurt just looking at them, and I was sore and stiff all over. But I didn’t stop. I bought over-the-counter orthotics for my sneakers and two elastic ankle braces.

Day four. Ankle braces were in place, but the orthotics took up too much room in my sneakers. I made my 10,000 steps that day, but the pain was incredible. I guess now is as good a time as any to mention that I have dermatomyositis, fibromyalgia and arthritis. So, when I say I had pain, I am not just whistling Dixie.

I kept going though. The sunrises, and peace and quiet of the countryside were so welcome and such a new experience for me. It was like I finally woke up to what life is. And every night, I hobbled to bed, wracked with pain. Everything flared. Joints, muscles, ligaments were on fire. Two nights I cried in bed, and I’m not a crier.

But I still didn’t stop. And little by little, I noticed, I didn’t need the ankle braces, my feet didn’t hurt quite as much and there was nothing I liked better that waking up before the sun and hitting the road.

Today is August 28th. I have walked over a million and a half steps and I’m not stopping anytime soon. I’m stronger, faster, and even though my feet still hurt, I am getting out there everyday.

I believe that this will keep me mobile as I age and all that other health and wellbeing stuff. But, the most important benefit of all? I can finally keep up with people!

Join me as I continue on this journey, because there is a sunrise every morning and miles to walk before I sleep.