Over the last few weeks, I’ve written a few times about wanting to make a few changes in my life for the better over the next year while not flat out calling them new year’s resolutions. While some of my attempts have been hit or miss, I’d like to think that I made a step forward this weekend, figuratively and literally.

Despite the cooler temperatures, I decided to go for my first long walk of the year Sunday afternoon. While it is a small achievement, I feel celebrating these small successes is worthwhile in keeping momentum.

For those catching up, I recently wrote about my trip home for the holidays and how my father inspired me to focus more on my health. I primarily wanted to focus on achievable goals like watching and being more aware of what I eat. I matched this with some lighter exercises, primarily around my home, with the goal of having a slow, gradual improvement.

I noticed that I was missing a few ingredients I needed for dinner that evening and needed to go to the store. With just a mile to the store, I decided to walk there rather than getting in my car.

However, once I started my trek, I kept making it longer and longer. Instead of taking the direct route to the store, I decided to take the longer road on the way there and the shorter trip back. Then, I saw a road that I’ve never hiked before and decided to take an even longer route.

By the time I got to the store, I was out of breath and had walked just under three miles in total. This doesn’t include the steps I made while shopping and skimming the aisles. Although, I think they should count toward my goal.

With the few, thankfully light, odds and ends acquired, I loaded myself up and took the thankfully easy route home. By the time I sat down at home, I’d walked nearly five miles that day, and to be honest, it made me feel pretty good both mentally and physically.