Walking Around NBMA

How to Make a Walking Playlist

Everybody on Earth loves music, and everybody likes different genres of music. Music is important in so many ways, and it is a very good way to spend time. Here are some tips on how to make a perfect walking playlist.

  1. Include both fast and slow songs, as well as some in between. For the upbeat songs you can pace your walk to that fast beat, and for the slow songs you can take a short break to walk slow. This can help with keeping your walk interesting.
  2. Listen to your favorite songs, as well as songs you don’t know too well. How many times has someone you know asked you to look up a song, and you feel like you don’t have time to listen to it? A walk is the perfect time to do this, because you don’t really have anything else to do.
  3. For people who don’t like listening to music for long periods of time, audio books and nature sounds are great alternatives. Nature sounds would be good if you have to walk in a really urban place. Audio books are great for entertainment, and can be listened to continuously, while a play list switches songs and themes all the time.

What to do on a walk

So walking for long periods of time is actually pretty boring. I’m not going to lie about it. An hour or two just walking without anything else to occupy my time would certainly bore me. But there are a couple of games and activities you can do while walking to occupy your time.

  • Play a scavenger hunt type game
    • This is one of the foolproof ways to make time pass quickly. You can look for shapes in the clouds, seashells or sea glass in the sand, or try to count how many people are wearing a certain type of attire (how many rollerblades, sunglasses, visors, etc.). This can be played alone, or as a competition between you and your walking partner.
  • Talk to Someone
    • Simply talking to the person you are walking with can pass the time. Or, you can call someone who isn’t with you. If you have your dog with you, you can even talk to your dog!
  •  Listen to Music
    • Listening to music can enhance a walk. But always remember to keep one earbud out at all times, so that you can still hear whats going on around you.

Staying Hydrated

As I said before in my Safety Tips for Walking Post, staying hydrated is extremely essential. But for a lot of people, simply drinking plain water is not satisfying or helpful enough. Things like flavored water, sports drinks, or eating extra sodium can improve health better than just normal water.

Flavored water has a ton of benefits, and a sweet taste is just one of them. The flavor makes you want to keep drinking water. The added nutrients are obviously beneficial as well. There are many ways to flavor water, either buying pre-flavored water, buying packets of flavoring, or using fresh fruits and vegetables to make diffused water, which tastes delicious, and is my favorite way to stay hydrated.

For really long walks, drinking too much water can actually become harmful. The sodium and water balance in your blood can dip too far one way. To avoid this, when taking long walks, either eat more high sodium foods before the walk, or substitute a sports drink for water. This replaces the electrolytes in your system. Also limit caffeine, as it can cause you to lose fluids.

Always remember to drink when you are thirsty when exercising.

Safety Tips for Walking

Whenever you walk, there are a couple of tips that always apply. Having water readily available is necessary to staying hydrated and healthy. Also, pacing yourself is good to do so that you can ensure you won’t burn out or run out of breath. Wearing comfortable clothing is helpful, but not necessary, as walking can be done at any time or place. And of course, while walking make sure to follow all laws and regulations, as well as respecting the environment.

Wearing comfortable footwear is the best way to make sure you will always be up for another walk. No one wants to walk around in tight, pinching, stiff shoes for a mile. While you don’t necessarily have to go out and buy super special and expensive walking shoes, good quality shoes would be good to have for long walks. As long as the shoes fit comfortably they will be good. I walk in whatever I already have, which would be either Converse or Tom’s brand shoes.

The tips above apply for walking in any time or place. Now I want to go over tips for walking at night. To increase visibility to cars and other people on sidewalk, wear bright colors and/or reflective materials. Bring a flashlight, even if you think you won’t need one, just to be cautious. Always walk with a trusted friend so that you are never alone, there is safety in numbers! While walking at night, always try to bring your cell phone, for emergencies. Avoid bad and secluded areas. Lastly, tell someone where you are going and what time you expect to be back. They could help you if you get lost or something terrible happens by alerting the authorities if you aren’t back in a reasonable time period.

A Forest Adventure

This weekend, I ventured a little out of the city into Freetown State Forest. While this was not in New Bedford, I didn’t have to travel far to see some of the most breathtaking views I’ve ever seen. My mother, my sister, and I walked through the trails just enjoying the scenery. After we wandered through the forest, we walked back into the main area, where the Profile Rock is.

In the Freetown State Forest there is an extremely large rock formation. On the main side, the profile of a Native American chief can be made out. It has a very distinctive look, and that is where it gets the name Profile Rock. My mother, sister, and I all climbed to the very top of the rock. The view from the top was amazing. Since it is Fall the colors of the leaves are changing from green to red and orange. You could see for miles, endless color.

Getting up and down the rock was difficult, but the descent was definitely the most perilous. One wrong move and one of us could have twisted our ankle, or even worse. The trick to getting down was to use our feet and find holds for them. Luckily, we made it down without any injuries. The trip to the woods proved to be very exciting and beneficial.

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