The Cat Box

You’ll always find something of interest in the Cat Box

When We Walk — April 3, 2014

When We Walk

I have always loved to walk and have accumulated many hours of memories and recorded thousands of impressions during my walking life. Walking always seems to have generated a heightened awareness in my senses stimulating my perception, my imagination, and my memories.

My mind can at any moment wander back to walking home from Muhlenberg Elementary School with my little sister. Sometimes I would trudge home, dragging the toes of my shoes, worried about some disclosure I would have to make to my mom upon arrival. Sometimes on the way Sallie and I would drop our book bags and run around laughing and teasing each other. And sometimes we would short cut over to our grandma’s house and share some delicious chocolate chip cookies that were always waiting in the freezer.

In Mid City, New Orleans I lovingly walked my newborn, Joseph, through the neighborhood, stopping along the way to allow my neighbors to admire the joy of my life. I could count on Miss Minnie’s being on her porch and she would always say, “Bring that baby up here, child. I need a closer look at that beautiful baby.” Joseph spent some leisurely afternoons strolling through Mid City and tipping a few iced teas on Miss Minnie’s porch.

When we moved to Denver from New Orleans we got a dog. Nelson was a Chesapeake Bay Retriever whose favorite activity second only to swimming was walking. Nelson and I put on many quick-stepping miles between our house and Nelson’s favorite swimming hole, the Cherry Creek Reservoir.

When our family moved to Evergreen, Colorado we adopted Boofy from the Evergreen Animal Protective League and my wilderness walking experiences took off. There was a dirt road that began up the hill from our house and descended into a beautiful woodland paradise that Boofy and I explored every day. I wrote about our walks here because they were so special to Boofy and me.

My dog Boofy in Elk Meadow, Evergreen, Colorado
Boofy in Elk Meadow

After my divorce Boofy and I moved to Denver’s beautiful Potter Highlands neighborhood and began hitting the sidewalks in what I think of as our own personal Urban Renewal. What an adventure it was being back in the city!

I could go on and on sharing my walking journal, but this story is called “When WE Walk.” When I say “We” I mean “You and me.” We receive energy when we expend energy and we don’t accumulate many memories sitting on our tuckus.

Walking stimulates our brains, our awareness, our lungs, our heart, and our smiles. When we walk we invite ideas, energy, and happiness into our lives. I invite you to go out and take a walk. It’s that simple, first one foot forward and then the other.

Now go on out and experience what happens when we walk. Let me know what you think.

More Healthy, More Happy! — March 28, 2014

More Healthy, More Happy!

Physical activity and movement, so important to humans, has somehow slipped away from us.

We seem to have stopped moving ourselves around in our daily lives and started jumping into our cars to move us everywhere for everything.

Many of us have jobs where we sit. We have cars that we sit in, and when we are sitting around at home we think about ways to fit some kind of physical activity into a lifestyle that has very little time left for adding anything.

To buy our food, many of us drive our cars to a grocery store and look for the closest spot in the gigantic parking lot to the door.

I have written about the joy of riding my bike to my favorite neighborhood farm market in Sunnyside to pick up browns (eggs from happy neighborhood chickens) and greens (arugula, and kale, etc.) from the corner of 44th & Vallejo in Denver.

Denver’s Stapleton Community is an Active Living Partner of the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation’s Active Living by Design where physical activity is restored back into the fabric of everyday life. People walk or ride their bikes to work and school and to the store and this is good.

The whole experience of riding your bike or walking down neighborhood streets to a local garden or grocery store, chatting with your neighbors, buying fresh food and walking or pedaling home with it is rejuvenating and makes us healthy and happy.

Healthy and happy is worth finding time for no matter where you live and I know that “more healthy” makes me “more happy.”

Happy and Healthy!
Happy and Healthy!

Since I am pretty sure that “more healthy” will also make you “more happy,” may I suggest that you sneak some activity into your life and move it around a little bit.

If you need a little prod, travel on over to my Pintrest account and check out “Day 100” for some “more healthy, more happy” inspiration.

Be Happy!

Temporarily Not Quite Least Obese — March 10, 2014

Temporarily Not Quite Least Obese

Back in October of 2010 I blogged about Colorado’s status as the country’s least obese state. I was happy to report that we maintained our status again in 2012.

Well, the bad news is the new numbers are in and Colorado has lost our first-place rating as least obese to Montana!

Montana???

Come on people of Colorado. What could have caused this?

I know what it has got to be,
and the only thing I think it’s got,
it’s got to be the legal pot!

pot plant
Legal pot in Colorado

I predicted that the legalization of pot would ruin our fair state. Now my predictions and the predictions of other luminaries have come to pass.

Legal pot IS dangerous. I mean this year we had Girl Scouts stationed outside of pot stores quadrupling their sales.

But, we can turn this around Colorado.

If all you are lifting is a bong in one hand and a local craft beer in the other it’s not going to work.

You have to get up and move it around a little bit. Walk to Sunday brunch.

A Denver B Bike
Jump on a B Bike
Get on a B Bike to do the brewery tour. Get out to Red Rocks when there isn’t a concert.
Take a hike in beautiful Red Rocks
Take a hike!

And Montanans, don’t get too used to to your top spot. We’re at least a mile higher than you are.

The Least Obese Again! — October 29, 2012

The Least Obese Again!

In October 2010 I blogged about an article in 5280 Magazine entitled “The Last Lean Americans” which reported Colorado’s obesity rates at about 15 to 20 percent to be the lowest in the nation.

Well, Colorado has done it again in 2012. It’s not surprising that the state with a population as active as Colorado’s would have the lowest percentage of obese individuals. These Pew findings are from surveys conducted with 177,663 U.S. adults from January through June 2012 for the Gallup-Healthways Well-Being Index.

Gallup calculates respondents’ Body Mass Index using the standard formula based on their self-reported height and weight. The World Health Organization defines a normal BMI range as being 18.50 to 24.99. It labels BMIs of 25.00 to less than 30.00 as overweight/pre-obese, and those with BMIs of 30.00 or higher are considered obese.

An average of 62.8% of all American adults were overweight or obese in the first half of 2012 — 36.3% were overweight and 26.2% were obese, which is pretty much unchanged from 2011.

Being the least obese sounds good, but our percentage of “overweight to obese” is 55%, which although is better than the almost 63% national average still represents pretty many people who are not as healthy as they could be.

fitness brings happiness

An October 25th article posted in Huffington Post  reports that obesity rates for the US middle aged (45-65) population  are on the rise.  Speaking of “on the rise,” the rate of STDs caught by men in this middle age category has more than doubled over the past 10 years, that’s according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC). Though that story is better saved for another day, I need to just say that middle aged men may want to be working out more and making out less. I’m just sayin’.

this could be you

Back to Colorado. Let’s think about next year’s Pew Report on Obesity. We could just continue to wallow around that 55% mark or we could mesmerize the rest of the country and the world with our level of fitness and healthy good looks. Ladies, I invite you to explore Lean.Clean.Mean on Facebook http://www.facebook.com/Lean.Clean.Mean. Total inspiration. Guys, check out the blogs and the workouts here http://www.mensfitness.com/training.

Whatever you end up doing begins with a single step. It’s the hardest part sometimes but one step leads to another and before you know it you’ve gone around the block. Use it and lose it. I’m off to the gym. Later.