Continuing the Transportation section of the How To Live Totally Free series this time I discuss why you should live in a walkable city. Not only will this save you money since walking is free, but you will improve your health by exercising. So is this a good option for you? Let’s review the pros and cons.
Live In A Walkable City By Moving To One
If you want to totally get rid of all forms of transportation and just walk but don’t have good walkability in your current city then you’ll need to move. Unless you are fine walking several miles to and from whatever you need to go. There are some people who don’t mind doing this. If you’re one of those people then this tip (or this article) isn’t for you.
So how can you find a town or city that’s good for walking? A good way to to search online. I found the website Walk Score which gives a grade to towns and cities regarding walkability. All you have to do is enter an address or a neighborhood and get the score. From there you will get results showing how walkable and bikeable the location is. Thus, if the area you’re looking at is car-dependent you’ll learn from the website. Yet, if it has a high walkability score then that’s a city you should consider moving to.
Live In A Walkable City And Get Healthy
Walking is a great form of exercise. It’s not hard on the joints and it doesn’t require you to push yourself. You can walk as slow or as fast as you choose. If you choose to live in a walkable city you will get healthy over time. And if you walk quite a bit daily (20,000+ steps) then you’ll drop weight fast.
The average American doesn’t walk enough. Most only take 3,000 to 4,000 steps a day. Health experts want us to walk 10,000+ steps a day. A great way to accomplish this is to walk to and from the store, or to and from an appointment. And you can do this if you don’t own a car or a bike.
Save On All Transportation Costs
When you decide to live in a walkable city and give up all modes of transportation then you will save money on all those costs.
No longer will you have to pay a car payment or insurance. You don’t have to worry about replacing bicycle tires or paying for repairs. Finally, you can save on electricity costs by not having to recharge batteries for a scooter.
You can talk all that money and invest it into a nice couple of pair of walking shoes because you’ll need it.
Here’s The Downsides When You Live In A Walkable City
OK, now it’s time to discuss the downsides of this decision.
It requires good planning and some luck. You need to live within suitable walking distance of places fitting your lifestyle. That is going to include a grocery store, medical service, recreation, and whatever else you need. Although you can get almost anything delivered nowadays through an app, you still need to have the ability to walk to a store if you need something in a hurry. Finally, this areas may have expensive housing costs. It depends on the location.
This is going to suck if you live in a sweltering or freezing climate. Yet, you can choose to walk during the cool of the morning/evening during the Summer or the warm part of afternoon during the Winter. I can tell you from experience that walking with the sun beating down you or below freezing isn’t fun. Remember, people do it all day everyday across the world so you could get used to it too.
Another downside is transporting your goods. If you need to carrying many groceries or heavy items then you need to buy a trolley or a wagon. A good thing is that you can buy foldable versions that don’t take up much space in your home. However, it can be difficult to walk and push/push if you have a heavy load.
Finally, if you’re not used to walking long distances then your body is going to rebel at first. You’ll be sore, your feet with ache, and you’re going to sweat quite a bit. That’s why I suggested you buy good pairs of walking shoes. Spend a few hundred dollars if you must. You gotta take care of your feet. Yet, the more you walk your body will get accustomed to the exercise.
If you miss any of the posts of the How To Live Totally Free series you can find all the posts here.