I believe walking my dog was a key factor in my weight loss, but getting outdoors can bring with it many other health benefits too. Indeed many people swear by walking for both their physical and mental health, and I see why.
For me it is a great way to burn off energy or perhaps even shake off some stress. Walking alone can help you to gather thoughts together and think through situations rather than act irrationally or in the moment. I know having BPD sometimes things can escalate pretty quickly, but getting some fresh air can really help to clear your head. So if you’re feeling the heat pick up your headphones and head for the door. It doesn’t matter where you go that’s the beauty of walking. There’s probably always somewhere you haven’t been, always somewhere to explore. Take in your surroundings. Take in the beauty of it all. We so often miss the beauty in day-to-day life, walking really makes you appreciate the little stuff, all the fine details. Since walking I’ve found some really cool places right by me that I didn’t even know existed- who knows what you could come across!
While walking alone or with my partner is great, at other times I enjoy walking in a larger group. Group walks allow time for talking, laughter and sharing among people you might not see every day, allowing you to expand your network and so a great way of socialising whilst exercising. Deep friendships can often be formed through groups such as these as like-minded people come together to talk about their issues, such as Mad Girl author Bryony Gordon’s Mental Health Mates in which she formed a walking/running group for people with mental health issues that took off and is now running globally- read her story here.
This week I am looking forward to taking part in my first Recovery Walk in Newcastle. Recovery Walks happen across the country and those who participate are those advocating recovery from all types of addiction. They are a celebratory event and a excellent way to get to know people and what’s going on within the recovery community.
I definitely think walking has improved my mental health and am looking forward to taking up more walking and exploring through my sober journey. The North East is full of beautiful walking hotspots so why not make the most of it?
Where do you like going on a nice walk? What de-stresses you?
See my other posts in the self care series!