Exercising on the road…don’t get the wrong impression. I’m not a fitness guru, or a health fanatic. I’m just a regular guy, who is trying to keep ahead of old age, which is coming up on me from behind, awful quickly.
As a person ages, he naturally has a tendency to slow down. When a person travels, he has a natural tendency to try different and exciting foods. These two natural tendencies seem to make a person gain a few pounds. At least that's how it's been for me.
I know I need to exercise on the road to maintain my metabolism and keep my immune system healthy. Movement also helps with my arthritis -- my shoulders and knees feel better when I don't just sit around.
My main exercise is walking. I can walk almost anywhere. I can walk around the community, to the restaurant, to the Walmart, in a park, on a trail, from the vehicle to the store, around a mall, up and down the streets in the RV park, or even on a tread mill.
Walking doesn’t require a lot of expensive or special equipment. I don't wear special exercise clothes or special fitness clothing. My everyday clothing, chosen appropriately for the weather, works just fine. A well fitting pair of athletic or walking shoes is fine for general walking. For more rugged walks on trails or rougher terrain, I like a pair of mid length hikers.
I do most of my walking outside of the RV park. While some people like to take the same route every time they walk, I find that boring. I usually head out exploring different areas during the daylight hours. If I venture out after dark, I’ll choose areas that I’ve found to look safe. If at any time an area looks less than safe, I’ll avoid it. When I find areas that I like, I’ll take different routes, or streets, and go through the area backwards and forwards.
Sometimes I’ll do errands while walking. I've learned to choose my errands wisely. I’ve found ice cream will melt in about two blocks. A gallon of milk is heavier than you think.
I always try to be aware of my surroundings. I watch out for traffic, surface conditions, animals, imminent weather, other people, nature, bikes, trains, and anything that may pose a safety threat to me along my route. When exercising on the road, I take my cell phone. I let Coleen know when I should be back.
I enjoy walking. I get to know the area where we are staying. I find out about the businesses and services the area has available. Walking is low impact and easy on my joints. It helps me sleep better. It reduces my stress level. It's cheap. It improves my overall personal fitness level. Walking is consistently one of the best ways for me to get some much needed exercise on the road.
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Editor's note: My husband, Bob Nilles, wrote this article. He also does some exercising on the road that he didn't mention in this article -- swimming, bicycle riding, fishing, metal detecting, and plain old physical labor. It depends on where our RV travels take us and what is available there. But, wherever we are, he always manages to get in some exercise and work up a good, healthy sweat. ~ Coleen