What an ancient proverb taught me about walking and thinking after every meal.
By Brad Beckstrom
There is an ancient Chinese proverb that goes: “take 100 steps after every meal and live to 100.” That’s not an exact translation but it just flows better. There’s also an ancient Indian term Shatapawali. The word is a compound from shata meaning “hundred” and paaul which means “step”, this refers to an age-old Indian custom of taking a stroll after a meal. It’s interesting that, like the Chinese proverb, they also mention 100 steps.
I’d like to think that 100 steps is a good starting point because most people could do that in about 1 minute. The key idea here is that once you take 100 steps there is a very good chance you’ll keep going. You’re creating a habit and a trigger to make it a permanent habit.
Just like an old roommate used to say “my goal for today is to walk to the stop sign at the end of the street and back.” You need to start somewhere. He was in his 20s at the time. I’m hoping that he kept up with the habit and maybe started walking a little further.
I’ve always been one of those people who vanished around lunchtime. It’s not that I was antisocial, it’s that I wanted to spend at least 30 minutes walking after I finished eating. When I worked in an office, I’d often accomplish this by picking a restaurant that was at least a 15 to 20 minute walk. Then I’d usually take the long way back. The meal would be usually the shortest part of the whole process, generally I was gone for about an hour.[Read more…] about Eat, Walk and Think.