I like to walk as much as possible. For my Everyday Sustainable Practice, my challenge is to walk anywhere within one mile from my home.
This is something I generally do and enjoy because:
- The Walk Score for my home is very high. This means there are many good destinations near my home, and I can usually get several errands done at once, and also have some fun, like stop for tea or ogle some yummy croissants, and seeing people. (More on walkability here.)
- On the flipside, my Drive Score is low. Driving and parking in San Francisco is usually a losing proposition, so it’s actually more convenient for me to walk than drive. (I wonder if the Walk Score and Drive Score tend to be inversely related?)
- I don’t get much exercise otherwise, so walking is part of my wellness plan.
The one challenge to this Practice is shopping at Trader Joe’s. It’s an exception to the more-convenient-to-walk rule, because there is a parking lot and I can generally shop when it’s not super-crowded. I generally take one trip per week, to stock up on staples, which means minimal driving.
However, this morning, I packed my backpack with another cloth bag, and walked downhill 10 blocks (about 0.9 miles) to the Trader Joe’s. Did I mention I live at the top of a San Francisco hill? I filled up my backpack with yummy melons and veggies — not necessarily light fare — and headed back. I was planning to walk back all the way, but I did bring my Muni Pass just in case a cable car went by… lo and behold one slowed down enough for me to get on. So I only had four blocks — though about 75% of the climb up — to walk home. Did I cheat? Yes. Was it worth it? My back and legs say yes! Will continue to monitor this.
Why it’s Everyday Sustainable:
- Environment: Zero Carbon Footprint
- Personal: Good exercise that doesn’t require any special equipment
- Community: Connects me to my neighborhood and people I see on the way