Personal Best Walking

I’ve been on a speed-walking binge for the winter, in an effort to get/stay fit and lose a few misbegotten pounds.

I walk Aka Lana Lana nearly nightly, though a little less often during the winter.  No matter how much I coax the dog along, though, dogs will be dogs and our average speed tends towards a reasonable 25+ minutes/mile. So I started going out after dog-walking to get some real speed on.

I started walking, and tracking, at the end of November 2021 with a 28:26 average around the lake – about the same as walking the dog.  Admittedly, I wasn’t pushing too hard at the time, but I wouldn’t have done significantly better if I had.

Just over three months later, and the same walk is now a 14:22 per mile average, or 4.17 mph.

runkeeper screenshot showing 14:22 minute walking mile

Ignore Runkeeper’s “3rd fastest” headline, I’m pretty sure I’ve never walked so fast in a long, long time – and this has been most decidedly walking, not jogging or running mixed in.

4 mph has a certain significance in my psyche, because I grew up thinking that it’s a reasonable walking speed for the untrained, after reading The Long Walk, not a breathing-hard kind of pace.  In retrospect I think Mr. King got that particular detail of the story wrong; I’m not sure you could expect people to last very long at that pace, and maybe 3.5 mph would have been more realistic for walk that should last more than 24 hours.  Then again, I’m the one who might be wrong.

I’ve also dropped a few pounds along the way, but I won’t publish figured on that quite yet.

Author: H Walker Jones, Esq

A professional programmer with a sordid past involving sysadmin, tech support, and cooking.

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