Park Once - Retirement Net by Lisa Byrne

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Park Once

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How inconveniencing yourself can help keep you fit.

One Stop Shopping. Do you have in your nearby town one of these grand shopping centers/complexes that offer “one stop shopping”? It’s like a self-contained outlet that can provide everything you need. Seems obvious the idea is to provide an efficient convenience for you as a shopper. Of course the idea is also to sell more products if it’s all in one place.

Simple shopping centers of old with a supermarket, drugstore, dry cleaners, and a bank have evolved into these monstrous shopping multiplexes: lots of stores, with gaps between them so big it seems a couple planes could land in between. Pretty huge, huh?

Okay, that’s where you come in, and the idea I have for you today. Understandably so, you’re on a mission when you go, say, food shopping. Maybe in that trip you need to pick up a quick gift at the wine store. And perhaps go to the bank.

So, if the time affords, think about parking once and do all those errands.

Let me explain. Yesterday at my nearby multiplex shopping center I needed to make a bank deposit, run to Staples, and get five items at the food store. I secured my parking spot way in the back of the food store lot and then plotted the course.

Bank first, Staples next, stop back at car to get re-usable bags and onward to food store. Sure it was a bunch of walking. If I was wearing my pedometer I’d say I logged about 700 steps. Remember a mile is about 2,000 steps—so that’s over a quarter-mile. I added 700 steps to my day merely by inconveniencing myself.

Park once, and plot your course from there.

It’s really not an inconvenience if you have the time. It’s about saving gas, saving the frustration of finding another parking spot, and challenging your brain to plot. It’s highly functional, with fresh air for your lungs and your mind. It’s doing yourself a whole lotta good by logging good moves for your body.

Try it next time you visit your nearest gargantuan, colossal, whopping multiplex!

Lisa Byrne is the owner and CEO of Pilates for Sport in Bucks County, Pennsylvania. She has a B.S. in Exercise Physiology, and is a Certified Pilates Instructor. Lisa has been in the Health and Fitness Industry for more than 23 years, operating her fully-equipped Pilates studio since 1999. Visitors to the movement studio span a wide range of physiques and abilities, and include average boomers looking for diversity; young people with Asperger's-Autism; hard-core athletes looking to “loosen up”; and those in need of chronic pain management through movement. Lisa’s website is

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