How does one get such an amazing opportunity? By writing a proposal of course... Only I didn't complete a study or publish a white paper. I didn't have a poster presentation or a product to market. I just sent in a proposal offering to host a morning walking group.
Walking. That's it. Not prayer walking, not walking meditation, not even power walking. I just like to walk and proposed that others would want to as well. It's that point in my career where I have nothing to lose by trying this type of thing. I figured that a conference full of wellness professionals would want to get out, do a little networking, and get some fresh air before a long day of meetings. Sure enough, I got the invite!
I learned more than I can summarize in a blog post from this experience, but believe it or not one of the most important realizations is that I'd be lost without my Moms.
Peg, my mother-in-law, was super supportive of this little walking plan. She shipped a whole box of walking books, DVDs, articles and magazines for me to reference during my morning excursions. One of the best conversation pieces I got was an article she sent about how the design of neighborhoods has changed since 1950 (more car-friendly, less pedestrian friendly). My walkers and I were able to break the ice by chatting about where we were from and how our neighborhoods were laid out to encourage movement or prevent it. Thank you Mama Peg!
Kathy, has been teaching me problem-solving skills for nearly three decades. She saved the day the first night when I arrived and realized the weather report called for rain! I hadn't made a backup plan, but she knew who to go to (the concierge) and where to consider (mall walking). What would I do without her? Thank you Mom!
Fortunately, the rain burned off in time for all three of my walks.
|Sure, Zumba and yoga might be fun, but what better way to prevent tired-butt syndrome than 7 a.m. lunges!|
|This was an interval one of my walkers suggested! Talk about some intense stairs.|
One quick note: I had the chance to talk with Richard Wilkinson, author of The Sprit Level. Dominic and I listened to him present his book at a Town Hall event in Seattle in 2009 and we have admired him ever since. The public has learned a lot about income gaps' effect on societal issues in the past three years. Maybe you'll get a future post devoted to this topic.
San Diego is clean and lovely. Don't let these photos fool you though, it was chilly! I had to get back to New York to experience spring again!
|Talk about a nice hotel view|
P.S. For all my fellow walking readers, this article series is a fantastic read.