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Walk and talk therapy

August 8, 2009

Nothing like an early morning walk with good friends to help clear one’s head.  One of the best parts of training for the Avon Walk for Breast Cancer is going for long walks, either solo or with a group.  Getting out and moving is a great way to work through daily aggravations.  Once you get into your stride, the walking becomes meditative.  Passing the time by talking about your troubles has two benefits, it makes the miles go by quickly, and you get a second (and third) opinion.  Way cheaper than a therapist and you burn calories, too.  You aren’t going to achieve that sitting on a couch.

Two years ago, I purchased a Garmin Forerunner 305 GPS-enabled personal trainer to track my walks.  I had used one of those clip-on pedometers that counts each step as one walks.  I was never able to calibrate it correctly and it was frequently off by a half a mile for every 5 miles walked.  That is a significant margin of error.  My sister, a triathlete, who has competed in the NY Triathlon, and 1/2 Ironmans, recommended the Garmin Forerunner to me.  My sister is awesome and I try to go to watch her compete in as many races as possible.  I may never be able to compete in a race, but I can be the best darn cheerleader out there 🙂

One of the fun things one can do with the Forerunner is upload the course to the Garmin Connect website and see all kind of statistics.  Plus there is an animated display of the activity.  Below is a video from the website of the walk from this morning.  For example, from today’s walk:  

Distance 7.00 miles,  Time 2:03:23, Elevation gain 3,700 ft, Calories 1,487.   In addition the average pace was 17:37 min/mile, best pace was 9:51 min/mile.  Not sure how we walked fast enough to get a pace of under 10 min/mile.

Another cool feature is the ability to upload the file to Google Earth and take a virtual tour of your walk.

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