One of my personal training clients just did a walking half-marathon with his workmates around the iconic landmarks of London, and found it had multiple benefits: great exercise, a chance to get to know London better, and a chance to catch up with colleagues over several hours. Walking is one of the best ways to get active, and millions of people have lost a lot of weight simply by walking more.
Walking has got to be one of the most simple and accessible exercises there is. London has some great open spaces for walking, but our city needs to become more walking friendly on the streets. It would also be great to breathe clean fresh air, but London suffers from a major air pollution problem, an issue I address a lot on this website.
Walking improves your health and happiness, and it's a great way to meet new friends and keep in touch with existing ones. It's a great way to get some exercise and hold a long conversation at the same time. Why not reconnect with London and other people by travelling around from A to B on foot, or simply explore London on foot instead of sitting in front of the TV.
When I started out as a personal trainer in north London, I used the Parkway Walk with clients. It's a disused railway line, which runs from Finsbury Park northwards to Alexandra Palace, and it's perfect for a long walk. My personal training clients in Crouch End and Highgate made good use of this path for jogging.
Walking in London is set to get a boost with a new bridge across the Thames for pedestrians and cyclists. It will be located between Wandsworth Bridge and Battersea Railway Bridge, linking Imperial Wharf in Battersea (north of the river) with Lombard Wharf in Wandsworth (south of the river). London Borough of Wandsworth awarded planning permission in June 2013, swiftly followed in November 2013 by the granting of planning permission north of the river by London Borough of Hammersmith & Fulham.
The bridge is intended to mark the Queen's Diamond Jubilee. It will be 9 metres wide and 240 metres (790 feet) long. The first phase was set to begin in October 2015: the Wandsworth foundation of the bridge on Lombard Wharf.
Lead architect is Chris Medland of One World Design. Conservative MP Jane Ellison has campaigned for this bridge, and it's great to see local MP's promote walking and cycling in our capital.
There are 9 Ramblers groups in Inner London. For more information check out the Ramblers Association website ramblers.org.uk.
Dog-friendly walks in the countryside around London (with an hour's lunch break), also shorter walks (maximum 5 miles) in Greenwich and Lewisham.
Check out the Capital Walkers Facebook Group for contact info. This group is for walkers in the 35 - 55 age group.
This group organises walks in the countryside around London, meeting up at a London train/tube station before heading out on public transport. There are also walks within London, along the Thames or canal paths or through London's parks.
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