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Walk this way

Original post made on Aug 29, 2014

With the popularity these days of marathon running, those of us who walk as our main exercise might be tempted to feel bad about ourselves. Don't, says Dr. Ronesh Sinha, a physician in internal medicine at the Palo Alto Medical Foundation and author of the book, "The South Asian Health Solution."

Read the full story here Web Link posted Friday, August 29, 2014, 7:49 AM

Comments (11)

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Posted by palo alto resident
a resident of Crescent Park
on Aug 29, 2014 at 1:21 pm

Wonderful article! Walking is great for both your mental and physical health. It can also be a great time to catch up with a friend - take a walk together!

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Posted by resident
a resident of South of Midtown
on Aug 29, 2014 at 1:49 pm

The Palo Alto Baylands are a great place to take a walk, especially during the summer when the Adobe Creek path is open from southern Palo Alto to the Baylands.

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Posted by Anonymous
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Aug 30, 2014 at 11:42 am

Windy Hill, Wunderlich and Rancho San Antonio Parks are great places to walk. Try to hike to Skyline once per week.

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Posted by Sue Lockford
a resident of College Terrace
on Aug 30, 2014 at 12:03 pm

Dr. Sinha's point that a burst of walking followed by a prolonged session of sitting isn't going to do you good is very important to remember.

You must interrupt your sitting (or lying down or whatever sedentary posture you fall into) with very frequent breaks to stretch, move, and walk.

For workers who spend a full day at the office in front of their computer, or sit in endless meetings day after day, the best two things are these:

(a) a standing desk (or even better--a treadmill desk), and
(b) standing meetings

With a standing desk, be sure to get a rubber floor mats to provide a cushion for your feet, and get a tall chair or stool on which you can sit for a few minutes each hour should you need to.

Standing meetings are even better. They force people to concentrate more on the work at hand, rather than trying to fill all available time with pointless agenda items. And this leads to shorter meetings (which are a huge win all around.)

Sitting is death is what all the research is showing us.

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Posted by Gertrude
a resident of Menlo Park
on Aug 30, 2014 at 12:25 pm

I live in Menlo Park but have a favorite walking loop that winds through Palo Alto.

I start at Burgess park, near the library, and then cross Alma Street to the long dirt trail that runs along the train tracks, completely shaded by a variety of trees which are particularly beautiful in the fall when the leaves are bright shades of yellow, red, and orange. It's like walking through a forest. The trail ends at the pedestrian/bike bridge next to El Palo Alto, and from there I turn left and follow Palo Alto Ave. to the Waverley pedestrian/bide bridge that leads to Willow Rd. where I turn left and then right on Laurel St., which leads me back to Burgess Park. It takes about 30 minutes at a fairly quick pace. This is an ideal walk for those who live in downtown Palo Alto or downtown Menlo Park. Just walk out your front door and go.

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Posted by Questionable advice
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Aug 31, 2014 at 1:25 pm

My cardiologist informed me that the the 7+ miles per day I walked were useless unless I was walking so fast that I reached my VO-2 Max and held it there for at least twenty minutes--in short, running! Running is hard to do with both rheumatoid and osteoarthritis, so instead I started using the elliptical trainers the gym.

Also, the latest research now shows that doing more than six hours of cardio work per week is bad for the heart (Sept 1 edition of Time Magazine).

My former employer at Novellus died of a heart attack in spite of walking six miles a day and being a vegetarian--ironically, the attack hit him on a walk.

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Posted by Gertrude
a resident of Menlo Park
on Aug 31, 2014 at 6:40 pm

[Post removed.]

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Posted by Resident
a resident of Another Palo Alto neighborhood
on Aug 31, 2014 at 6:54 pm

Walking to get somewhere on a regular basis is a good form of exercise. If you walk, you have no problem parking. I strongly suggest using a small backpack to carry what you may need for your destination, perhaps a dressier pair of shoes, rather than carrying a bag, so that you can swing your arms while walking and get a good rhythm.

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Posted by Judith
a resident of Leland Manor/Garland Drive
on Sep 2, 2014 at 11:39 am

Put everything you need in another room.
Use the bathroom farthest from your work station.
Park in the first space you see.
Buy comfortable shoes.
Put only some of your meal on the table at the beginning, then get up for the other parts.

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Posted by Walker Mom
a resident of South of Midtown
on Sep 2, 2014 at 12:50 pm

Walking and bicycling with our kids to school is a great opportunity for exercise and quality time with them and their friends.

Live actively!

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Posted by parent
a resident of Midtown
on Sep 2, 2014 at 2:18 pm

There really are 2 types of exercise. If you're trying to improve your fitness and athletic performance, regular vigorous exercise (sweating, heavy breathing, etc) really does work best. Your entire workout does not have to be high intensity, but you should have some periods of high intensity every week.

On the other hand, even low intensity exercise, like walking to the train station, is still much better than nothing. It does burn some calories as well as keeps your muscles and bones and heart from prematurely decaying. I just read a study that regular moderate exercise also improves your brain function, including concentration and IQ.

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