April is National Volunteer Month, so what a great way to get more walking in! Volunteer to walk and play with shelter dogs, walk and pick up the liter for your city, or walk and exercise with elderly, youth, or other groups. Not only are you increasing your step count, but you are also creating great experiences for yourself and helping others who need it. As RDs, we can get involved with our local food pantry or services like Meals on Wheels. You have a great opportunity to get out, get more steps in, and get involved in your community.
Participate in a Virtual 5k
Have you ever heard of a virtual 5k? I hadn’t either until I stumbled upon an Eventbrite 5k here in Chicago put on by Virtual Run Events. This is something you can do anywhere you’d like without having to travel far to attend an event. A virtual 5k means you sign up and commit to walk or run a 5k and then you are sent your Virtual 5k Runner’s shirt running number. After you’ve logged your completed 5 kilometers, you will also receive a participation medal in the mail.
This is 5k fun you can enjoy year round, and a perfect way to celebrate National Walking Day. In fact, the group Virtual Run Events hosts a special National Walking Day Virtual 5k as well.
Make Your Meeting Be a Walking Meeting
We attend all kinds of meetings for all kinds of reasons. Today, speak up and ask if you can take the meeting outside. Find a nice quiet path for walking, talking, and brainstorming. Nature is a great inspiration source.
Have a Family Walk Around the Block Tonight
Get your family involved with National Walking Day. It’s great to have your spouse and kids (and the dogs) practicing healthy lifestyle habits too. You can start a new family tradition of walking after dinner or walking before everyone goes off to work and school.
Meet Up with Friends for a Catch-Up Stroll, not a Catch-Up Coffee
Are you meeting up with a friend for a quick coffee break today? I know you are busy and a coffee break is a perfect meet-up spot to catch up on some quality friend time. Instead of your usual coffee spot, how about meeting up at the park down the street? A walk can help as a great mid-day energy boost, and hanging out with your friend will already help elevate your mood too. This is a winning combination to lift your spirits, especially to let go of all that stress at work.
Walk Around During all Commercials
If it’s your day off and you are feeling extra lazy, girl, I feel you. All you want to do is binge watch your show and keep a pile of your favorite snacks on hand. Netflix doesn’t have commercials, but if you’re watching cable TV, Hulu, or YouTube, make it a fun challenge today to get up and walk around during commercial breaks. Break out that pedometer or watch your step count on your iPhone. Okay, Netflix users, you aren’t off the hook- you need to walk 5 minutes between each episode! You got this!
Go Sightseeing, Walk and Explore
You are never done exploring in Chicago; there is always something new to discover! Break out your google maps, Instagram searches, or simply wander around without a guide and see what you can find on your own. Sightseeing is a great way to celebrate National Walking Day. If I were you, I would love to visit a new park, a zoo, or a Chicago neighborhood you aren’t familiar with (here I come Greek Town!). Keep the wanderlust alive.
However you enjoy walking, go out and walk!