exercise

The sovereign invigorator of the body
is exercise, and of all the exercises
walking is the best.

Thomas Jefferson

  

Walking is the natural recreation for a person who desires not absolutely to suppress his or her intellect but to turn it out to play for a season.

Leslie Stephen

      
The rhythm of walking generates a kind of rhythm of thinking, and the passage through a landscape echoes or stimulates the passage through a series of thoughts. This creates an odd consonance between internal and external passage, one that suggests that the mind is also a landscape of sorts and that walking is one way to traverse it.  A new thought often seems like a feature of the landscape that was there all along, as though thinking were traveling rather than making.

Rebecca Solnit
  
Walking exercises the whole person.  It exercises the body-- it gives the arms and legs a workout.  It stimulates the flow of blood; expands the lungs.  It is gentle and relaxing.  It exercises the mind-- it shakes up the brain cells.  It fills them with oxygen;  drives out the cobwebs.  A famous scientist says he does his best thinking on the two miles of sidewalk between his home and office.
  Walking exercises the emotions.  It gives you a chance to observe and enjoy the world.  Open your eyes to beauty.  See the homes, the trees, the gardens.  See the shining faces of little children.  Listen for the church chimes, singing birds and the laughter of happy people.

Wilferd A. Peterson
   

When you have worn out your shoes, the strength of the shoe leather has passed into the fiber of your body.  I measure your health by the number of shoes and hats and clothes you have worn out.

Ralph Waldo Emerson

  

Walking is the great adventure, the first meditation,
a practice of heartiness and soul primary to humankind.
Walking is the exact balance between spirit and humility.

Gary Snyder

   

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An early-morning walk is a blessing for the whole day.

Henry David Thoreau

   

In every walk with nature one receives far more than one seeks.

John Muir

  

Above all do not lose your desire to walk. Every day I walk
myself into a state of well being and walk away from every
illness. I have walked myself into my best thoughts and I
know of no thought so burdensome that one cannot walk
away from it.  But by sitting still, and the more one sits still,
the closer one comes to feeling ill. . . if one keeps on walking
everything will be alright.

Søren Kierkegaard

  

Happy is the person who has acquired the love of walking for its own sake!

W.J. Holland

  
If you are seeking creative ideas, go out walking.
Angels whisper to a person when one goes for a walk.

Raymond Inmon
  

I can only meditate when I am walking.  When I stop,
I cease to think; my mind works only with my legs.

Jean Jacques Rousseau

   

exercise

Walking would teach people the quality that youngsters find so hard to learn--patience.

Edward P. Weston

  

Walks: The body advances, while the mind flutters around it like a bird.

Jules Renard

   

To find the universal elements enough; to find the air and the
water exhilarating; to be refreshed by a morning walk or an
evening saunter; to be thrilled by the stars at night; to be
elated over a bird’s nest or a wildflower in spring--these
are some of the rewards of the simple life.

John Burroughs

   

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One thing that you find out when you have been practicing mindfulness for a while is that nothing is quite as simple as it appears.  This is as true for walking as it is for anything else.  For one thing, we carry our mind around with us when we walk, so we are usually absorbed in our own thoughts to one extent or another.  We are hardly ever just walking, even when we are just going out for a walk.  Walking meditation involves intentionally attending to the experience of walking itself.  This brings your attention to the actual experience of walking as you are doing it, focusing on the sensations in your feet and legs, feeling your whole body moving.  You can also integrate awareness of your breathing with the experience.

John Kabat-Zinn
   
   

My father considered a walk among the mountains as the equivalent of churchgoing.

Aldous Huxley

    

The mere thought of walking outdoors on a brilliant golden-blue day
causes fire-works of delight to go off in most people’s psyche. It gives
one an instant feeling of happiness and that is meditation! We are not
only in touch, at that moment, with the physical splendour of nature,
but also with the beauty of merging our own spiritual nature with it.

Karen Zebroff

    

It takes days of practice to learn the art of sauntering.  Commonly we
stride through the out-of-doors too swiftly to see no more than the most obvious
and prominent things.  For observing nature, the best pace is a snail’s pace.

Edwin Way Teale

   

Walking takes longer than any
other known form of locomotion
except crawling.  Thus it stretches
time and prolongs life. Life is
already too short to
waste on speed.

Edward Abbey

    







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exercise

I am alarmed when it happens that I have walked a mile into the
woods bodily, without getting there in spirit.  In my afternoon walk
I would fain forget all my morning occupations, and my obligations
to society.  But it sometimes happens that I cannot easily shake
off the village.  The thought of some work will run in my head, and
I am not where my body is; I am out of my senses. In my walks I
would fain return to my senses.  What business have I in the woods,
if I am thinking of something out of the woods?  I suspect myself,
and cannot help a shudder, when I find myself so implicated even
in what are called good works—for this may sometimes happen.

Henry David Thoreau
  

A vigorous five-mile walk will do more good for an unhappy but otherwise
healthy adult than all the medicine and psychology in the world.

Paul Dudley White

   

The mental benefits of walking are also many.  Walking for me has a very similar
effect to meditation for other people.  It helps me to clear my mind, and it helps me
to think through problems and dilemmas.  When I'm out walking without hurry and
without a destination, my mind tends to relax as I focus on so many things outside
of myself, as I see the natural world around me and breathe the fresh air.  A long
walk can help me to reach a state of clarity much more easily than any other practice
that I've ever discovered, and walks have often helped me through difficult times in my life.

tom walsh

   



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