Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Wellness Wednesday: Nature Walking in Urbania

In short, I don't believe we have to buy products to be physically fit. I believe lots of marketing critters would like us to believe it though. This does a real disservice to low-income people who might actually believe they can't have good physical health because they can't "afford" it.

Sorry. Ain't buying it ~ figuratively or literally.

As long as we have arms and legs, we can exercise free. There's no need for gyms, gimmicks or "special programs". You don't need special clothes. You don't need Jenny Craig or Nutri-System. You don't need Curves. It is, as someone said, "a big bowl of wrong"! Physical fitness is relatively simple. Move. That's all there is to it. Eat less. Move around.

I believe this strongly which is why my purchase this morning surprised even me.

While walking, it's nice to have something to listen to besides other people's car radios (especially those jerks who honestly believe we want to hear their bass a mile away), trucks, sirens and other urban sounds. So... I bought a portable MP3 player. I looked at a variety of them. I even looked at iPods but there's no way I am willing to spend that kind of money for something so frivolous. As long as there are other people who need food and water, I can't justify that kind of expense for something so completely unnecessary. Even spending $80.00 on a player is a stretch but at least I can justify it a little bit.

The MP3 player isn't for music. Truth told, music isn't all that interesting ~ but I discovered that the soul series on Oprah's website which features many inspirational speakers and even the TED talks can be downloaded in MP3 format. Listening to inspirational speaking is something I've always liked. That's probably why I am a talk radio fan as well. There are just some fascinating people on this planet and I want to hear what they have to say.

Coast to Coast radio also offers MP3 downloads of the nightly show. Since I often fall asleep in the middle of it, it will be a pleasure to listen to it during the day.

I'm also going to download nature sounds on it. There are no birds chirping or crickets here in the 'hood. This area is mostly concrete and strip malls. Sometimes I would like to hear birds, small animals, wind, rain or even the ocean.

I know this device is certainly not necessary for health and well-being. It's strictly a luxury - but sometimes that needs to be okay, too. If it keeps my feet moving, I'll give it a try.


Just for today, I can also be found here, as if you don't get enough of me already!



heartinsanfrancisco said...

I would say that you took care of your emotional healthy which is not only just as important, it directly affects your physical health.

You're right about the fact that expensive equipment and fancy designer diets are not necessary. I belonged to a gym once, which was extremely boring. I much prefer to use my body doing things I enjoy and becoming fit naturally.

A stationary bike will never compare with riding a real bicycle through ever-changing scenery.

Mariposa said...

So true Chani!

I frown over those so-called health products...nothing but marketing and media hype.

I for one would rather go for a walk and nature seeing than be in the gym...and I'd rather eat tomato salad from my Mom's garden than eat those low-fat preserved stuff they claimed to make us reduce weight.

And when I go mountain trekking, I always end up turning off my MP3 bec live sounds from nature is way relaxing... :)

And what $80 for an MP3 player? I am only selling them at $20 here! LOL

afeatheradrift said...

If you have to walk in an area with traffic and the usual city noise, then music is definitely the way to go. Out here in the country, it would be silly. The sounds of nature are by far more soothing and uplifting I find.

Ruth Hull Chatlien said...

I've been listening to music when I ride on the bike path. It makes it more of a meditative experience.

I hadn't thought about downloading clips of speakers though. That's an interesting idea.

Border Explorer said...

//As long as there are other people who need food and water, I can't justify that kind of expense for something so completely unnecessary.//

Thanks for that, Chani!

Anvilcloud said...

I applaud your frugality when it comes to an iPod. I bought one three years ago after much hemming and hawing and soul searching. Since then I have been very happy to have it; it's come in very handy.

Was it something I said?

The Abandoned AC

Carla said...

I agree with you, those things aren't necessities at all...but you're also right, that mp3 player is sometimes all we need to keep moving. I was fortunate that one was gifted to me awhile back. I also like to put inspirational speakers on it.

MsLittlePea said...

I've been down with the MP3s since the Rio--it only held about 12 songs but since then I've been hooked. My ipod was a gift from my husband and I love listening to audio books when I'm all 'music-ed out'.

And oh I SOOOO agree with you about those silly pricey diet products. A multi vitamin is about as far as I go. Sometimes the gym comes in handy when it's 90degrees under the Florida sun but for the most part- a bike ride or a good walk is the best.

Suki said...

Chani, I feel that by staying off unnecessary products that "take care of your health", you've earned this one which seems to do great good for your emotional health.
And yes, right now I'm simply longing for a plot of land for an herb garden, and I feel that would solve all my need for cosmetics or gymming. Till then, I subscribe to a different kind of consumerism and purchase essential oils. Make of that what you will, but it helps me and I don't regret it. Not much, anyway.

Molly said...

You unlocked the secret to fitness in one word---M-O-V-E! That is the secret. Nothing more complicated or more expensive. Loved your guest spot at SM's blog. Too many people are too busy or too uncaring to stop and smell the flowers---the actual and the figurative.

we_be_toys said...

Move! It's the new fitness go-to word! (Sad, isn't it? That people need to be sold on something to be fit.)

I couldn't bring myself to buy an iPod either - way too pricey for something that just plays music, etc. I bought a Creative Zen because they were much cheaper, could use a battery (for when I'm not near a computer to recharge, which is a lot!), and was easy to wear when walking.

I can see why you would want to listen to the sounds of nature - I have to live where I can hear the birds, the crickets, and the wind in the trees, or I get very cranky.

Amy Y said...

I'm glad you got it ~ we all deserve a little luxury once in awhile!
And whatever helps keep you motivated to be active is awesome... it's often difficult to accomplish the motivation you need to be healthy!

womaninawindow said...

Funny (but not really at all) we sell fudge AND those new shake 'em up while you stand and do nothing machines. The machines are $1600.oo and supposed to improve your overall health. The fudge is 11.99 a pound. We often sell both to the same people. Crack that riddle!

hele said...

Thinking of you walking through the hood listening to birds, small animals, wind, rain or the ocean made me happy.

PeterAtLarge said...

Sounds great, if you can dig it. Problem for me is that I find it hard to have someone speaking directly in my ear; it seems intrusive, somehow. And the sound of recorded birds, waves, etc., makes me somehow sad. It's just... well, not here. Sorry to be the dissenter in this instance. May you get much pleasure from your new device!

jen said...

i think its easy to get caught up in the concept of exercising (and all the distractions we think we need) rather than simply moving. but of course, you know this already.

ps. i really, really liked the post you wrote over at Slouchy's.

Olivia said...

Chani, Good for you for getting an MP3. I subscribe to Oprah's Soul Series and love the speakers. It is nice to have a companion to talk to and to learn from, one so light and convenient, who can be a companion on our walks. I totally agree with you about exercise and moving. xxoo, O

Rebecca said...

I love Oprah's soul series. Another great place is Shift in Action ( where some of today's premier "thinkers" can be found.

Sober Briquette said...

thank you for those podcast recommendations! I thought I was very creative with my husband's birthday gift: I downloaded a bunch of podcasts for him. Free! Yay!

I wondered where to find more (he likes NPR), so thanks again.