Trail Walking

When morning came I felt the trail calling me and daring me to come see what was different each day. Sometimes the voice came from inside me and other times it came from my husband telling me we needed to get going.

Either way, I got up, got dressed, put on my shoes, a jacket that could be tied around my waist when the sun began to warm my back, some food and water in my pocket, and off we'd go.

When morning came I felt the trail calling me and daring me to come see what was different each day. Sometimes the voice came from inside me and other times it came from my husband telling me we needed to get going. Either way, I got up, got dressed, put on my shoes, a jacket that could be tied around...We were living in West Virginia at the time. The trail was one long stretch one way until we reached half the amount of our walking time and then we turned around and walked back. It was like taking two different routes because what we saw going was different than what we saw coming back. Kind of how we see life and people, it depends on which directions you're coming from.

Trail walking has always been relaxing for me. Sometimes I think things through and other times I let my mind rest while I enjoy what is all around me. The scenery is constantly changing with the seasons. One day it may be cloudy and quiet, another day birds are gliding through the sunshine filling the air with their chatter. I am never bored when we walk the trails.

One morning we saw a couple of Mallard ducks playing along a Creek Trail, while on the other side of the road a Kingfisher scanned a pond in a farmer's field for breakfast. Sometimes horses came to the fence to watch us walk by while camouflaged deer peered from behind trees.

Walking is the best exercise I have ever done. I have had memberships into the best gyms, been trained by a world-famous weight lifter and ran around tracks to stay healthy, but walking is by far the safest, most effective form of exercise I have ever done.

On my 42nd birthday, I realized I had somehow become 30 pounds overweight. I made a plan to walk 20 minutes of my 30-minute lunchtime at work every day, started paying attention to what I was eating and on my 43rd birthday, I was 30 pounds lighter.

I still struggle with my weight, but walking every day helps me. A brisk walk can burn up to 100 calories per mile or 300 calories per hour. That means that an eight-mile walk burned up 800 calories. Hmmm, I liked that better than starving myself to lose a few pounds.

Doctors will also tell you that regular walking strengthens your heart, lungs, bones, and muscles, and it also helps your body resist and fight illnesses. According to the Surgeon General, it also increases energy and has a positive impact on our moods, reducing anxiety and depression.

When we were in Morgantown we walked some great trails. But we have learned some things that can make trail walking a good experience, like good shoes, a snack and some water.

The first time we walked Decker's Trail, we walked further than we planned. We started at Mellon's Chapel at the six-mile marker and walked seven miles to Masontown at the 13-mile marker.

We had only taken a little protein bar to munch on and it wasn't enough for my husband, who is a diabetic. When we got to Masontown, we thought about walking to a restaurant, but once we got off the trail it was straight uphill and we were tired. We had to call our son to come and get us. Since then we are careful to take a substantial snack and water just in case we walk further than we intended.

We are also careful about shoes. Nothing ruins a good walk like hurting feet and hurting feel usually mean blisters. Because my husband is a diabetic and can't always feel the sore spots he checks his feet at night for blisters. If there is a sore spot, some moleskin can prevent a debilitating blister.

Because almost every cell in our body needs water to function we need to constantly be replenishing our body's supply.

We passed people on the trails riding bikes, pushing babies in strollers, running, walking fast, and slow. At mile marker 9 on Decker's Creek Trail, we met a man named Dave who sold refreshments at a homemade stand behind his house, which faced the trail. Across the trail was a swing, some picnic tables under a covered shelter to sit and rest and chat with Dave if you wanted to.

If you are willing to carry a camera with you, there are endless opportunities for photos. Some people like to just walk and count the miles or the hours. My camera helps me to slow down and enjoy the trail I am walking on.


Author's Image
Deana Landers
Author for Morningcoffeebeans.com

I have had many roles in life
Pastor’s Wife , Mom/Nana , Nurse/Health Educator, Writer , Christian Speaker
I can't remember a time when I wasn't writing stories, either in my head or in my journal.

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Story Comments

  1. I need to make time to walk. We live in a great walking neighborhood right near the beach, so the opportunity to run into some pretty scenes are plentiful. I'm always so happy after I've gone, I just need to do it more!

    • Deana Landers -

      Thank you, Kim for reading and responding. I know how it feels to put it off. We just have to keep trying to add some steps every day.Deana

  2. Such great tips. I love to walk as well, but I need to remind myself to stay hydrated and drink more water. Keep up the great work.

    • Deana Landers -

      Thank you, Brooke, for reading and commenting. Deana

  3. I always seem to be to busy to go for a walk, but when I do go it is defiantly good for me. It is the perfect way to destress after work and just clear your head. It was always a time when me and my husband spoke the most with no interruptions. I just realised how much I missed that reading your story.

    • Deana Landers -

      Thank you, Anita. I'm glad my story reminded you of sweet moments.Deana

  4. We try to walk every day, it's tough to get myself to do it, but my hubby has built some beautiful trails on our property, there are no excuses in my case other than I lean towards lazy! ;) Walking is my favourite.

    • Deana Landers -

      Wow, Laurie, it is great that your husband has built you trails the walk on. I'm a little lazy too. Sometimes I would rather work in my garden than take a walk. Deana

  5. Diane Brown -

    I love to walk. I love trail walking!!!

    • Deana Landers -

      Diane, we've got some good trails here in Marion. You can come walk with time:)Love

  6. It's so impressive that you dropped 30 pounds through walking Deana! I love to walk too; I was doing a lot more walking with Hubs when he was home and now have to remember to keep that up!

    • Deana Landers -

      Sara, I don't walk as much as I used to because I work so much in our garden, but it is still my favorite exercise. Sara, thank you for always reading and commenting dear friend.Deana

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