The Art of Walking

New Yorkers are known for their love of walking. I was devastatingly underprepared in fitness for the practice of this particular part of the culture. Everybody here walks. Everywhere! Children, the elderly and usually at neck-breaking speeds too.

Here’s what I’ve learned about walking in New York:

1. The grid like structure of the city i.e. 100 feet wide avenues (30.5m wide) , 60 feet wide (18.3m) standard cross streets, and the major cross streets (also 100 feet wide) make it easy to walk long distances without even realizing it. You’ll only notice at the end of the day that you’ve walked halfway across Manhattan!

2. I quickly realized that I needed comfortable walking shoes instead of fashionable ones because of the walking culture here. After being here for a month, I understand why. Walking isn’t just a way to get from one place to another, it’s also a chance to take in the sights and sounds of the city. I often get distracted and walk for longer periods of time and learnt from this habit to get comfortable walking shoes.

3. Sometimes, walking is cheaper than taking the subway. I’ve met people who have walked for over 30 minutes to get to their destination. I realized that it’s a good alternative if the location is close enough. In my case, it gives me a chance to appreciate the architecture and the parks around me.

4. Free walking tours are a fantastic way to combine education and enjoyment while walking. I recently had the opportunity to participate in a walking tour that took me from the iconic Brooklyn Bridge to the vibrant neighborhood of Dumbo. It was an incredible experience that allowed me to not only explore different areas of the city, but also learn about its rich history and cultural significance. I highly recommend taking advantage of these tours if you’re looking to discover more about the city and get your cardio workout for the day out of the way.

Azole Njengele


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