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Walking in America
Old 11-27-2005, 06:50 PM   #1
 
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Walking in America

We did a lot of walking around during our recent St. Louis trip. The most amusing part was that every time we asked how to get somewhere, and mentioned that we were walking, the response was always:

"Oh no, you can't walk there, it's too far!"

As an example, one of those "Oh no, that's too far!" walks only took 19 minutes.

The bad part was that sometimes we ended up in totally deserted areas, and we probably weren't that safe. This limited our nighttime walking.

BTW, total cost for a week in St. Louis, including airfare: $1760.
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Re: Walking in America
Old 11-27-2005, 07:18 PM   #2
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Re: Walking in America

Quote:
Originally Posted by TromboneAl
We did a lot of walking around during our recent St. Louis trip.* The most amusing part was that every time we asked how to get somewhere, and mentioned that we were walking, the response was always:

"Oh no, you can't walk there, it's too far!"

As an example, one of those "Oh no, that's too far!" walks only took 19 minutes.

The bad part was that sometimes we ended up in totally deserted areas, and we probably weren't that safe.* This limited our nighttime walking.

BTW, total cost for a week in St. Louis, including airfare: $1760.
Random night time walking in St. Louis is not a good idea IMHO.

JG
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Re: Walking in America
Old 11-27-2005, 07:31 PM   #3
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Re: Walking in America

To broaden the discussion, I have found that in Europe people walk at least 10 times, if not more, than we do.* I think it contributes to their lesser weight, and probably to better health.* I've been to France and Spain in past 5 years, and both places seem to have many more walkers than we (USA).* Most of us would drive to the mailbox, were it possible.* I can't speak for New York or Washington but here in Texas, walking is just not done, unless you are poor.* Perhaps the reason you gave explains all.* It's not safe.* But, I don't believe it; we just do not want to walk and life in the suburbs seems to decrease the opportunity.*
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Re: Walking in America
Old 11-28-2005, 01:03 AM   #4
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Re: Walking in America

Maybe someone could answer the question of why people drive to the health club/fitness centre, spend an hour walking on a treadmill, then drive home?
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Re: Walking in America
Old 11-28-2005, 05:33 AM   #5
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Re: Walking in America

People don't always feel safe walking to the fitness center, and breathing city pollution along the way can do more harm than good.
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Re: Walking in America
Old 11-28-2005, 07:18 AM   #6
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Re: Walking in America

A lot of the US is no longer "walk-friendly"; no sidewalks, dangerous traffic. Most people don't live near the places we go to shop or do business.

My DH & I bought a little log house a few years ago (where we intend to RE); it's on 4 acres with lots of woods and a stream. But the best part is that it's only a little more than a mile to town. We will often walk to town to have breakfast, go to the bank or to the library. But it can be treacherous with no sidewalks or room on the side of the road. We have to be VERY careful...

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Re: Walking in America
Old 11-28-2005, 09:00 AM   #7
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Re: Walking in America

My older brother is a fitness fanatic...runs or rides his bike everywhere. He lives in New England were its pretty common to see people out exercising...on a recent trip down south(Think it was new orleans area, he was living there for 3-4 months for a temp job) he was out jogging someone called the police on him...assumed he must be running from something...guess they don't have many joggers down that way...
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Re: Walking in America
Old 11-28-2005, 09:05 AM   #8
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Re: Walking in America

I love to walk. This is one of the reasons I never liked the suburbs. Often no sidewalks and no where interesting to walk.
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Re: Walking in America
Old 11-28-2005, 10:32 AM   #9
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Re: Walking in America

If you wanted to see "walking," ya should
have gone up to Alton, Il (15 miles North
of St. Louis) on Saturday for the running
race along the river road.

About 845 people running 10 miles on
a crisp fall day alongside the Mississippi River

I ran it.
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Re: Walking in America
Old 11-28-2005, 11:22 AM   #10
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Re: Walking in America

"We did a lot of walking around during our recent St. Louis trip.* The most amusing part was that every time we asked how to get somewhere, and mentioned that we were walking, the response was always:

"Oh no, you can't walk there, it's too far!"








There is a lot of that in any city, I suppose.

But I work in St. Louis, on the South side, and I go out
and run 5 miles at lunch, during which I often run by (literally)
the bank or the post office to tend to business.

Within that 5 mile run is a Walgreens, a Big Lots, a Radio Shack,
Family Dollar, Blockbuster.

Within walking distance of the house (13 mile commute) is a bank, couple of credit
unions, another Walgreens, hardware store, (2) grocery stores,
Wal-mart, numerous smaller shops, restaurants, public
library, and even (2) car washes, although walking/running to the car wash
is self-defeating.

Other than the commute to work, and weekend "road trips." I
can get by driving very little.* Save money on gasoline, wear-n-tear
on the vehicle, and on health club fees.

Wear out the sneakers pretty quick.
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Re: Walking in America
Old 11-28-2005, 11:35 AM   #11
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Re: Walking in America

There is a whole "movement" out there in the urban design world which is trying to counter this "unwalkable" trend.

I recently heard this guy (Dan Burden) speak about it - he puts on a good, inspiring slide show.

http://www.walkable.org/
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Re: Walking in America
Old 11-28-2005, 11:44 AM   #12
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Re: Walking in America

Quote:
Originally Posted by Michael
People don't always feel safe walking to the fitness center, and breathing city pollution along the way can do more harm than good.
What makes you think the air inside the health club is any better than the "city" air? Air filters are mostly for large particles and the gasses and other finer particles (the ones that can harm you) are not usually filtered out except in the very finest HVAC systems for demanding "clean room" use. Pollution gets drawn into the HVAC system and you breath it anyway.

My experience is that most people drive there so they can exercise in a controlled environment; not too cold, not too hot...and have a shower afterwards. They also like having a variety of machines to use which help ease the bordom with "going where you already are" on a treadmill.
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Re: Walking in America
Old 11-28-2005, 01:05 PM   #13
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Re: Walking in America

Ten days ago, I started a walking for fitness program. I have put in a minimum of 30 minutes per day...every day. I already feel much better!

I dropped a car off at a shop last week, and they asked if I needed a ride. I responded that I only had to go about 1 block. They said, no problem they'd call the shuttle. I said, "I'm not that lazy...I don't mind walking."

I then proceed to walk 3 1/2 miles home.
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Re: Walking in America
Old 11-28-2005, 05:01 PM   #14
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Re: Walking in America

Quote:
Originally Posted by Sheryl
There is a whole "movement" out there in the urban design world which is trying to counter this "unwalkable" trend.

I recently heard this guy (Dan Burden) speak about it - he puts on a good, inspiring slide show.

http://www.walkable.org/
James Howard Kunstler's book - Geography of Nowhere: The Rise and Decline of America's Man-Made Landscape and his followup book Home From Nowhere are great reads on this topic.
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Re: Walking in America
Old 11-28-2005, 05:09 PM   #15
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Re: Walking in America

I love walking or running, do it daily outside in the good weather with the dog, I have the treadmill for winter and rainy days, a bowflex for my "machine" work and I'm just a step from my own shower when I'm done. I've belonged to gyms but I find I prefer being at home so with the money I saved on membership I bought good equipment. Dh just put a TV up in the exercise area so I can watch the news on the treadmill, it's impossible to walk outside here after dark in the winter, just to dangerous.

As for walking in the city, Boston is a fantastic place, everything is within walking distance, half the kids that work for me don't own a car and half of them don't even have a licence.
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Re: Walking in America
Old 11-28-2005, 05:32 PM   #16
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Re: Walking in America

DW and I walk 5 to 8 miles every day in Mesa, AZ. Mesa is the 3rd largest city in Arizona, and traffic is terrible. But we do most of the walking along the canals here. We avoid almost all traffic that way.

Thirty years ago DW and I were hitchiking around the country. We covered thousands of miles Illinois to Washington to California to Quebec to Florida . . . But we would often get picked up less than 50 miles from a destination city by someone who would ask where we were headed. When we would specify the city, they would respond, "Oh, that's a long way to hitchhike." I sure hope that walking doesn't become as obsolete as hitchhiking has.
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Re: Walking in America
Old 11-29-2005, 10:20 AM   #17
 
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Re: Walking in America

Ah, hitchhiking. I sure had some interesting experiences hitchhiking.
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Re: Walking in America
Old 11-29-2005, 10:29 AM   #18
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Re: Walking in America

I never hitchiked anywhere. Knowing my luck, I would have wound up murdered and stuffed in a carbage can somewhere. * I do like to walk for exercise however.*
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Re: Walking in America
Old 11-29-2005, 10:32 AM   #19
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Re: Walking in America

Quote:
Originally Posted by DOG51
. . . Knowing my luck, I would have wound up murdered and stuffed in a carbage can somewhere. * . . .
I hate when that happens.
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Re: Walking in America
Old 11-29-2005, 10:38 AM   #20
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Re: Walking in America

After two weeks in Italy we weighed the same as when we left. We walked a lot.
I didn't see any fat people in the cities we were in. Walking was common. It's not a special activity like here, seems to be just a part of everyday life.
I look out my window here and see folks walking with a purpose like their doctor told them to do it.
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