Step 12: Take a Walk During Lunch

Every person who has ever worked in a 9-5 job* has faced the following dilemma:

Buy lunch out or eat bagged lunch?

This in my head was often reframed as:

Buy exciting lunch and get rejuvenating walk or remain stuck at desk eating boring lunch?

You can guess what the obvious choice was.

Once I started getting serious about my loans, however, $buy $lunch $out . . . was out.  Boring Desk Lunch was the only option.  But, like so many of my problems, this one turned out to be A Failure To Think Intelligently rather than An Intractable Obstacle That Cannot Be Solved.

It used to be that I would spend about 30 minutes picking up lunch: walking to desired lunch location, waiting for said lunch to be made, waiting in line to pay, and returning to office to eat it at my desk.  Now I have a 1-1 replacement: eat lunch at my desk, and go for a thirty minute walk.

And the thirty minute walk kicks the butt of my previous Operation Buy Lunch routine.

Here’s why:

#1  This is what my thirty minute walk looks like:

View from a Lunch Walk

Ok, I’m spoiled rotten.  I do actually work in the downtown of a city – I swear!  However, this is right around the corner.

#2 Stretching my legs in the middle of the work day (under trees!) is like hitting the rest button on my brain.  And boy do I need it – by lunch time, emails and telephone calls have already been flying fast and furious for a bunch of hours, my to-do list has almost always grown, rather than shrank, and I’m starting to forget where I put my brain.

#3 I feel just a tiny bit guilty for sneaking out in the middle of the day.  It’s like eating the last piece of bacon before Mr. DebtFreeJD wakes up.  And as we all could guess, that makes the bacon more delicious.

# 4 Really.  This is what my walk looks like.

Really. Downtown in a real city!

In conclusion, who the heck would pick spending money on the Chinese lunch buffet over this?  Not me!

*My job, alas, is definitely not 9-5, but the same principle applies.

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