Archived here are the week 4 posts from the 2019 Walktober Challenge!
Day 20: One of the things I love best about walking in nature is the marriage of visual beauty with the visceral impact of sound. I love watching moving water, but I enjoy hearing it just as much. It feeds my heart and soul.
Day 21: How do you arm swing? Well, first of all, check to see if you do. Then notice if your arms are bent or straight. And are they swinging back/front or side/side? you guessed it, we're focusing on the upper body movement of our walk this week.
Day 22: Your arms can have extraordinary variety in your walk, but like most habits, we tend to do the same old thing. So yesterday we noticed what that habit is for us. And for a whole lot of us, we either don't swing our arms at all, or we do it with bent arms. If you're carrying something, have your hands in your pockets, or are run/jogging, bent arms are cool. But if your hands are free and you're walking, try letting your arms fully straighten and swing fully with your stride. It's a different kind of work, a different stretch, improves circulation, and massages the lymph nodes in our arm pits. Immunity for the win!
Day 23: How your humerus (upper arm bone) sits and moves relative to the shoulder can make a HUGE impact on how we use our upper body, arm swing while walking included. So let's explore it! I've drawn on the crease of my elbow (I call them the elbow pits) and we're going to move them around. Place your hands on a flat surface with middle finger straight ahead. Then try to swivel your arm to make your elbow pits look toward each other, and then forward again. Hands stay still! While we're looking at our elbows, the movement actually comes from the rotator cuff of your shoulder, so it's a great shoulder workout! Swivel those arms around and see how it feels!
Day 24: When your elbow pits face forward, your upper arm bone is positioned in 'neutral', neither turning in or out. Feels weird, right? That's because most of us have our upper arms rolling in, and we don't even know it! But here's a fun trick - your upper and lower arms move separately! Can you move your forearm and hand without rotating your elbows? And then you practice walking with elbow pit and thumb looking forward? Remember, if the pits are facing in, your arm is rolling in (rounded shoulders anyone?). Try this out on your walk today!
Day 25: With your thumbs and elbow pits facing forward, we now get to explore some muscles that have been missing out on the fun! I have a 12" foam block, but whatever you have that is as wide as you need is good. Keeping your thumbs and pits forward, keeping our upright alignment, try moving the block away from your butt. Hello triceps and upper back! It helps un-slump us and builds the tone we crave in the upper arm. How great is that?
Day 26: Remember when we talked about posterior push off with your legs when walking? We can do the same with our arm swing! Here I'm practicing pulling my arm forward and then letting it swing back (anterior) and then starting by pulling my arm back and letting it swing forward (posterior). They can look pretty similar, but one uses primarily the front muscles and the other the back muscles. Want to work on your back and triceps muscles while walking? Pull your arms back!