Getting outdoors and moving is one of the easiest ways to boost our physical, mental, and emotional well-being. We sometimes assume that if we don’t get to the gym for a “real” workout, it doesn’t count as exercise. But science has shown that the health benefits of walking are huge.
Too often, this was my morning scenario: I’d “commute” from the kitchen into my home office and start work. Before I knew it, I’d realize I hadn’t moved from my laptop in hours and it was already lunchtime!
All that has changed. As a former college athlete, I understand the importance of moving. During my first Thrive Challenge, I established a regular routine of walking around my neighborhood, which has made a big difference to my state of mind. I feel more invigorated, energetic, and productive throughout the day. But I’ve also noticed another interesting change: I come up with some of my best ideas and solutions to problems when I start moving. And in fact, those bursts of creativity that come to me as if by magic on my daily walks are rooted in science. A landmark Stanford University research study found that individuals boosted their creative inspiration by an average of 60 percent just by walking.
This week I’ve been inspired by Walmart associates and customers who are stepping out and stepping up their well-being as they take the time to enjoy the season. Check out these 10 uplifting social posts from members of our Thrive Challenge community.
1. Kathryn Carpitcher, Walmart Supercenter #103, Shawnee, OK
I want to start with this delightful post from our new Thrive Challenge Grand Champ, Kathryn Carpitcher, who I was thrilled to meet last week in Oklahoma when we surprised her with the news that she is our big winner. Here’s Kathryn out for a walk with her adorable nephew, Chance. Those smiles say it all.
2. Julius Warren, Sam’s Club #6572, Knoxville, TN
Here’s another Thrive Challenge winner, Julius, celebrating his wedding anniversary by combining a great family sports day with a long walk around the University of Tennessee campus. Congratulations from all of us, Julius!
3. Patty Kennedy, Sam’s Club #6572, Knoxville, TN
I love this photo from Thrive Challenge winner Patty Kennedy enjoying a peaceful nature hike with her canine companions. Patty also shares with us that “emotionally, hiking helps me feel better. Being outside is my passion, I feel free when I’m in nature. I take it all in, the birds singing, squirrels playing, leaves changing. And it makes me happy seeing our pups wagging their tails, their cute little smiles with tongues hanging out.”
4. Siara Coprew, Walmart Customer, VA
This is such an inspiring post from Siara who has been walking every day, took part in a 5K organized by her church, and ended up with a trophy! What an accomplishment, Siara.
5. Gemma Dees, Supercenter #4235, Terre Haute, IN
Gemma and her husband, Phil, share with us that they never miss their twice-daily walks with their dogs, whatever the weather. Gemma says that, while walking, “I love taking photos and getting spontaneous ideas for a great camera shot. Walking clears my mind and I love breathing the fresh air. And my dogs, Lola and Pepe are always encouraging us!” This week they’re enjoying the magic of Halloween in their neighborhood.
6. Stephanie Smith, Walmart Supercenter #3213, The Woodlands, TX
Stephanie has been with Walmart for 30 years, which is cause for celebration in itself. This Thrive Challenge winner shares here how she’s walking her way to physical, mental, and emotional strength and feeling a great sense of accomplishment.
7. Susanne O’Dell, Walmart Customer, Hamburg, NY
Susanne shares that moving, along with taking the time for some slow, deep breathing, helps her feel great — and relieves stress at work. Your achievements are remarkable, Susanne!
8. Andrea Booker, Supercenter #848, South Haven, MS
Andrea is a Thrive Challenge winner and recently returned from a trip to the UK, where she was visiting family. Now she’s settling back into her routine at home in Mississippi, ending every day with an invigorating walk. Andrea, a devoted mom of two and grandma of 11, is always taking care of her family but understands how important it is to take care of herself first.
Andrea going for a walk with her grandson, Devontay
9. Bill Linsner, Walmart Store #2326, Hornell, NY
One Microstep at a time, Bill Linsner is enjoying peaceful strolls in the lovely New York countryside. He’s also running, and this devoted father of two girls shares with us that he recently completed a 5K, along with other associates from his Hornell store. Bill’s goal: running a half marathon next February. We know you can do it, Bill!
10. Brenda Glover, Supercenter #4399, Elkhart, IN
If any further evidence was needed about the benefits of walking, here it is from Thrive Challenge winner, Brenda. She’s a passionate photographer who’s enjoying the fall weather, expressing herself creatively and is clearly full of the joys of life.
You can now connect your wearable device in Thrive when you join the Thrive Challenge — and don’t forget to share your story. It’s your time to Thrive! Walmart and Sam’s Club Associates (plus friends, family, and customers) have free access to Thrive. Sign up here and submit your story for a chance to win part of a $1,000,000 prize pool.