Comments 2

The Sedentary Life

I spent the last year or so pretending I didn’t have a bum shoulder. I figured I could just be more conservative, stronger or more mindful, but eventually I was getting super injured doing daredevil things like lifting up my duffel bag or sleeping. I began to worry about my ability to take care of myself and my partners in the backcountry- it was time to do some more body maintenance- my seventh major orthopedic surgery in the last decade. The cool thing about having a bunch of bad luck over the last few years is that I’m really good at keeping myself sane on the recovery end. Hint: it involves more than just whiskey. I’ve learned how to be ruthlessly cheerful with myself, and I get exercise in every way I possibly can- which for now just means walking. A lot of walking. I got one of those pedometers (it has a tres chic rubber butterfly on it, ensuring its ability to clash with everything) and on good days it tells me that I’ve walked enough steps to be considered “active.” I live for those 10,000 steps, which can be a bit of a buzzkill. The thing is, 10,000 steps are actually really challenging to gather, especially when you’ve already got all the books you can handle and/or you’re bummed about hurting your shoulder and don’t want to get out of bed. The distance usually comes to about 5 miles, and you don’t get that just from taking the stairs. IMG_5236 IMG_5232It’s really made me appreciate how hard it is to become “active” if you’re not already. Maybe your office is less than five miles wide (most are), or maybe the road to work makes for a dirty, dangerous commute. Even with the fitness, time and motivation to walk, I can usually think of about a thousand reasons why not to. So I do stuff like make dates with people absurdly far away, and then plan on the “commute” taking two or three hours. If I go hiking, I also hike to and from the trailhead. Often I just have to suck it up and walk even if it’s not the most exciting walk to walk. My ipod has become my best friend. As soon as I start walking I’m almost always weirdly stoked to be doing it. You get an amazing feel for what distances really are, and you see/hear/smell all sorts of things on your way. Especially if you walk allies, which is the sort of thing I like to do. I’m becoming a connoisseur of chalk art, a totally non-creepy people watcher and a collector of litter. If I’m on a trail I’m an ardent hot-lava player and photographer of dead trees. It’s not a strenuous workout, and I never get the kind of satisfying full-body exhaustion I might get from, say, climbing a couloir before sunrise. BUT walking’s what I’ve got right now and I’m grateful. Heading to New York next week to visit my brother and do some city walking- we’ll see what they think of my R1 and butterfly pedometer (look for me on the Sartorialist!)


    • lydiatanner says

      Thanks for reading, chica! Hope we’re still on for adventures this summer!

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