For the past couple of months, I’ve been living and working in downtown Chicago during the week (Monday through Thursday). I stay in a lovely hotel at a prime location and work in an office about 2 miles away from there.
Downtown Chicago is a very walkable area, so when I get out for lunch, dinner, shopping, going to the gym, etc… I’m on-foot. The only time I take a cab is to and from the office because I’m toting my laptop bag loaded down with heavy electronics. And when I move hotels in a couple of weeks, I’ll probably start walking the 1.5 mile roundtrip to the office and back.
I’ve gotten pretty used to walking everywhere and actually enjoy it… you know, the whole getting exercise without it really feeling like you’re exercising. I end up walking about 1-2 miles on the average day (often – in heels!). Tuesdays, I walk an additional 3.5 miles round-trip to my kickboxing class and back. While my husband was here for the weekend, we probably walked about 9 miles over the span of 2 days without really feeling like we had done so.
Out of curiosity, I sat down last night and used MapMyRun.com to map out my mileage from each day last week. Between last Monday and Sunday night, I walked a total of 24 miles… with only 4 of those miles being done intentionally for exercise down at the Lake-front.
When I’m at home, I walk approximately one-tenth of a mile per week for anything that isn’t intentionally for exercise and then grudgingly additional miles to get some exercise, with a weekly total no higher than maybe 7 miles these days… not an impressive total at all.
Walking to and from the grocery store at home in Savannah is just not feasible, but I can start looking for other ways to get out of my car and on my feet… maybe parking at the furthest point of the store’s parking lot (where my Lexus is less likely to get door-dings anyway) to give myself a longer walk than the typical 10 feet to the door… or parking at one end of downtown and wandering the shops until I find myself at the other end. It probably won’t add up to 24 miles per week, but it will add up over time and that’s a lifestyle change that I can live with for years to come.
What about you – is your city walkable? Do you ever use a walk or a bike-ride to run errands?