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.

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.

What’s Out There in the Hood? — October 31, 2010

What’s Out There in the Hood?

Part of the excitement of taking a walk in your neighborhood is about not really knowing what awaits you. You could meet neighbors walking dogs and/or children. You may see fox or raccoons, or a black cat may cross your path. During the change of this season into winter when everyone around you is sneezing and coughing, you may want to keep your eyes peeled for something a little less obvious but very powerful that you may be passing by.

Rose hips from my fence

Growing all around your neighborhood on rose bushes that were not trimmed back after the blossoms faded are plump red/orange berries growing from where the spent blossoms grew. These “rose hips” are a very potent source of vitamin C and make a subtle and healthy tea to help you ward off the attack of germs trying to get into your body.

Rich in many nutrients, rose hips are a healthy supplement to help maintain good health and prevent colds, flu and infections. In addition, the various flavonoids in rose hips have potent antioxidant action, helping to protect the body from the effects of stress, aging and the environment. During World War II, the British government used collected rose hips to make rose hip syrup as a source of vitamin C to replace citrus fruits that were impossible to get. Native Americans have been using rosehips as tea for thousands of years, and when the tea is finished, the hips were added to stews or soups. There was just too much nutrition in a rosehip to let it go to waste!

Walking itself is good medicine that is found to give a healthier life, including lowering high blood pressure and reducing the risks of stroke. Walking can also ease the symptoms of depression and “the blues” that some people suffer as we roll into winter. So, get up out of your chair and explore your neighborhood. Ask your neighbors if they have rose hips growing on the rose bushes in their yards.

Collect as many rose hips as you can and cut them in half. Next, scrape out the seeds which you can save and cultivate into more rose bushes

Add two tablespoons of cut rose hips to each two cups of boiling water and allow them to simmer for 10 minutes. I like to cover the tea and let it set overnight.

Pour your tea through a coffee filter and sweeten with stevia or honey.

Make enough to share with friends and family who you will find to be very curious about and excited to try this forgotten tonic.

It’s all good and it’s free; walking, talking, and sharing the healthful benefits of rose hips. Right out there in the hood!