For the past five years, I’ve been a walker. Not the zombie type, but someone who likes to go out for walks. When I walk, I feel my mind is clear and I can think, especially if I’m somewhere more natural and away from people.
I started off exploring neighbourhoods, and I noticed I was becoming much more aware of my surroundings. I was more alert to what was going on around me. I then started challenging myself to long distance walks. I regularly walk more than 10 km these days, but four years ago, I walked 35 km in one day. It was incredible. It was an eye-opening experience, and gave me a sense of adventure. I saw places I’d have never seen if I didn’t walk. But walking alone and walking with someone are completely different. Walking with my wife, we tend to talk a lot more. Walking by myself, I can get lost in my thoughts and I can clear away any stress I have.
Walking does something to my energy levels. I have a lot more endurance and can walk for longer periods of time, but I’m still quite tired when I’m finished. I want to sleep. I don’t have any energy for anything else. Running would do the same. High energy cardiovascular exercises would drain me.
Last week, I started something a bit different. I’m now doing strength exercises, the very simple push-ups and sit-ups. I’m amazed at how much of the body is worked on during push-ups. To keep the body straight, the muscles in the back, stomach, hips, and legs are all given a workout. I also noticed on day one that my arms felt dead. It had been years since I’d done a push-up, and I realised how out of shape I am. My arms felt weak for two days after the first session of push-ups. But on the second session, which was two days after the first, it was easier. And my arms didn’t feel rubbery. I had my third session today, and while it was more strenuous, I feel fine now.
So, what does this do to my energy levels? I’ve found that on the days I’ve done push-ups, I have more energy. I feel more awake during the day. I feel better. Who knew doing a few minutes of push-ups would give you more energy, more alertness, and a much better feeling.
This is great for keeping my mind more alert, and this can only mean it’ll help me with my writing. That’s right, exercise helps with writing, or at least the thought process. I’m going to try to keep at it.
For another writer’s perspective, check out Shannon A. Thompson’s post here.
For those of you who write, do you find that exercise helps you?