The Carquinez Strait Bridge between Crockett and Vallejo with its foot and bike path was my new destination for my go-to exercise of walking last week. Thinking that trails along waterways would be quite scenic, I wasn’t terribly disappointed. However, the combination of the concrete and steel with the cars, plus the murky water–the color of pond scum–with the rusted-out buildings and boats helped me decide to not return to that particular venue. The experience helped me realize that anywhere I place my feet could have opportunities for new discoveries and challenges. Part of the newness could be the very act of moving vertically itself.
One wouldn’t think that something as ordinary as putting one foot in front of the other could require much thought or concentrated effort. Yet, when I engage my brain to focus on the muscles used when walking, the exercise gets filled with new revelations. Being aware of positioning heels and toes, making those big bum and thigh muscles work, swinging the arms, straightening the shoulders and spine–combine together to make the art of walking become quite invigorating.
An additional bonus to walking is the use of the senses, which come alive with hearing new sounds, sniffing new scents, contemplating new scenery–keeping that camera at the ready, next to the water bottle. Any walking venue can have new surprises and feasts for the mind and body, but wherever I choose to tred, my brain is actively involved in making certain that my whole body is completely involved.