Wednesday, July 3, 2013

In First Six Months: Some Pain, a Lot of Gain, and a Clear Road Ahead

This Independence Day marks the six-month anniversary of this blog about one of the joys of my life: walking. I keep up this blog not only to motivate myself but (I hope) to inform and inspire others who struggle to stay active as the years roll by. I appreciate the encouraging comments I have received. Without a doubt, I intend to continue walking and writing about walking.

In the first six months, I have had 4,566 page views up to this very minute, with readers from across the United States, as well as such countries as England, Canada, Germany, France, Israel, China, Russia, and the Netherlands (among many others). This look back constitutes blogpost No. 100.

One constant is my faithful walking companion, Sadie the Superdawg. She is an elderly dog now but she has not lost her zest for walking. Moreover, she still lobbies for extending the length of our strolls on cool days.

I also have written a good deal about birds: the Great Backyard Bird Count, Swan behavior, Snowy Egret takeoffs, the fishing Cormorants, the loquacious Mockingbirds, and of course the Cardinals, among many others. I combine dog walking with birdwatching and dub it bird walking. I have also written about the never-ending battle to lose weight, eat right, and generally be as fit a senior as possible. Some special topics have been preparation for cold-weather walking and the occasional joy of walking in the rain.
Walking Maggie Dog on a Visit to Memphis

Brookgreen Gardens: A Walk in Eden

Young Dasher: Who Is Learning to Walk on a Leash

The Superdawg Taking a Well-Deserved Post-Walk Nap

When You Walk, You can Stop to Smell the Roses, or Watch the Butterflies

The blog slowed just before and after my total knee replacement in April, but I am stepping up the pace now -- of writing as well as walking. I hope my chronicle of rehabilitation through physical therapy has helped others who may face this challenge. I am glad I had it done. It is helping me walk without thinking about pain with each step I take, although I do still think about the clicking sound I hear with each step. (I have read scholarly articles stating that the clicking is normal and often goes away with time and exercise. As long as it continues to bring no pain, I am fine with it.)

Here is wishing a Happy Independence Day to all. On a personal level, part of independence is being able to move out and about freely. It is worth remembering on this July 4 that the author of our Declaration of Independence, Thomas Jefferson, was a zealous advocate and practitioner of long walks. "Life, Liberty, and the Pursuit of Happiness" surely encompasses the ability to roam freely in this great land.

© Robert G. Holland  2013

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