Walking saves a great deal of money on gas, car maintenance and sometimes parking. If you live close enough to the office to walk, you get to enjoy those benefits every day. Use these tips to make your walking commute easier.
How should you walk to work? Does your usual driving route work or is their a safer or more direct route on foot? Test out a few different routes on foot. Not only do you find the best possible path, you also get to time the routine so you know how far in advance you need to leave so you aren’t late.
Pack a Bag
If you don’t normally use a bag for work, that will change when you start walking. A bag helps you carry any work gear easily while on foot. You might also need a few extra items when you walk, such as deodorant or different shoes for the office.
Choose a bag that distributes the weight evenly across your shoulders. Backpacks usually do the trick well. You can walk hands-free with the weight on your back. Another popular option with walking commuters is a messenger bag. It crosses over the body so it stays in place better than a bag that would go over one shoulder.
Watch the Weather
Very few days are the perfect temperature for walking. You’ll have days that are hot and days that are cold. You’ll likely see rain and other weather if you walk to work every day. Those weather elements don’t have to stop your green commute, but you do need to plan accordingly.
Wear layers on cold days to keep yourself warm. Wear boots on snowy or rainy days so you don’t have wet feet all day at work. Bring a change of clothes on a hot day so you don’t sweat through your work outfit. Have a backup plan in cases of extreme weather.
What you wear for the commute depends on a few factors. If your walk is short, you can likely wear your work clothes for the walk. If your normal footwear for the office is heels, slip on some comfortable walking shoes with your work outfit and put your heels in your bag.
For longer walking commutes, consider wearing comfortable, athletic clothing for the actual walk. Put a change of clothes and change when you get to work. Athletic clothes allow you to move freely so you can walk at a steady pace for the commute. You also don’t risk getting your work outfit dirty or sweaty.
Pedestrians should have the right of way, but not all motorists pay attention to people on foot. Always follow pedestrian safety rules. Walk against the traffic and use a sidewalk if possible. Carry a cell phone in case you need help. Stick with well-traveled routes so you don’t put yourself at risk of attacks. If possible, walk with an acquaintance so you have the safety of another person.
No matter how long or short your walking commute, you may feel the need to freshen up when you get to the office. Pack a washcloth so you can dab your face or sweaty areas of your body. Put on another application of deodorant to get you through the day. Touch-ups to makeup may also be necessary, especially on hot days when you sweat a lot.
If you plan it right, a walking commute can be a feasible option for people who live close to work. You can quickly freshen up and get yourself ready to work without getting stuck in traffic.