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13 Quotes to Inspire You to Get Out and Walk

Walking is one of the most basic actions we all perform, whether it’s strolling down the street or setting off on a 10-mile hike through nature. Despite the simplicity of walking — putting one foot in front of the other — the benefits are numerous. Many studies show that just 30 minutes of walking a day can improve both physical and mental health. It can strengthen the heart and the joints, burn off calories, and boost immune function. It can also improve your mood and, studies suggest, increase creativity.

It is perhaps this latter benefit that has made walking so popular among writers, artists, thinkers, and other creatives. As the limbs loosen during a walk, so too does the mind. Whether in the city or in the countryside, the simple act of walking can reveal thoughts that might otherwise have stayed locked away.  If you’re struggling to find the motivation to take a stroll, consider the following quotes from famous figures both past and present about the myriad merits of a good walk.

The sum of the whole is this: walk and be happy; walk and be healthy.
— Charles Dickens

Every day I walk myself into a state of well-being and walk away from every illness. I have walked myself into my best thoughts, and I know of no thought so burdensome that one cannot walk away from it.
— Søren Kierkegaard

All truly great thoughts are conceived while walking.
— Friedrich Nietzsche

A walk is always filled with significant phenomena, which are valuable to see and to feel. A pleasant walk most often teems with imageries and living poems, with enchantments and natural beauties, be they ever so small.
— Robert Walser, writer

I am extremely happy walking on the downs… I like to have space to spread my mind out in.
— Virginia Woolf

Walking and talking are two very great pleasures, but it is a mistake to combine them…. The only friend to walk with is one…. who so exactly shares your taste for each mood of the countryside that a glance, a halt, or at most a nudge, is enough to assure us that the pleasure is shared.
— C.S. Lewis

The sovereign invigorator of the body is exercise, and of all the exercises walking is best.
— Thomas Jefferson

There is nothing like walking to get the feel of a country. A fine landscape is like a piece of music; it must be taken at the right tempo. Even a bicycle goes too fast.
— Paul Scott Mowrer, journalist and poet

[Walking] is the perfect way of moving if you want to see into the life of things. It is the one way of freedom. If you go to a place on anything but your own feet you are taken there too fast, and miss a thousand delicate joys that were waiting for you by the wayside.
— Elizabeth von Arnim, novelist

I understood at a very early age that in nature I felt everything I should feel in church but never did. Walking in the woods, I felt in touch with the universe and with the spirit of the universe.
— Alice Walker

Give me odorous at sunrise a garden of beautiful flowers where I can walk undisturb'd.
— Walt Whitman

Walking, ideally, is a state in which the mind, the body, and the world are aligned, as though they were three characters finally in conversation together, three notes suddenly making a chord. Walking allows us to be in our bodies and in the world without being made busy by them.
— Rebecca Solnit, writer

Distance changes utterly when you take the world on foot. A mile becomes a long way, two miles literally considerable, ten miles whopping, fifty miles at the very limits of conception. The world, you realize, is enormous in a way that only you and a small community of fellow hikers know. Planetary scale is your little secret.
— Bill Bryson

Photo credit: milos-kreckovic/ iStock

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About the Author
Tony Dunnell
Tony is an English writer of non-fiction and fiction living on the edge of the Amazon jungle.
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