I am basically a sedentary creature. A friend once accurately described my idea of exercise as getting up from the recliner to walk to the bookshelf and back. But I have a dog. A dog that has to be walked. She has to be walked because what I don’t have is a yard.
Twice daily outings toting a little green plastic bag are not a highlight on my agenda. But it has to be done and we, the dog and I, are much better off if we both enjoy it. To make this happen I have to practice what I preach by answering the question, “How can I make this more fun for me?”
We stay inside the condo complex in the morning. I stand barefoot in the damp grass, gaze into the trees, and listen to the morning bird calls. As Geraldine hunts for scraps to eat and the best places to do her business I blow bubbles which drift on the air currents. Morning bubbles have lasting power because humidity is higher so their journeys can be epic. Occasionally I get the bonus of hearing in the distance “Ohhh look! Bubbles!”
Afternoons are for the long walk. We have a couple regular routes. One takes us through a park where I can play on the swings and she can roll in the grass. The park has much nicer grass than the condo complex does. Our other regular route is all about being sociable. Walking a dog is great way to meet the neighborhood kids and other dog owners. With rare exception, we all know each other only by our dogs’ names. The last stop before we get home is to visit with Eugene. He is usually sitting in his driveway working on a painting, reading, or holding court with other dog walkers. We all stop there for the news of the neighborhood. Once in a while we go exploring, off in a new direction with new sights, new smells and new neighbors to meet.
I still don’t look forward to walking the dog, but once we get underway it is always a pleasant experience.
Developing techniques that take the “Ugh” out of chores we don’t enjoy (like walking the dog or doing the dishes) is included in my programs for Living Playfully. For more information go to check out my events page,