Orla: Walking from A to B is time just for me.

As a mum of 2, Orla wants to be more environmentally responsible and uses walking to live a more sustainable family lifestyle.

Orla, Humans of the Walk 2021

Orla began walking daily when remote working was introduced at the start of the pandemic and walks to stay motivated and look after her mental and physical health. Her love of walking has helped her reduce car usage for short journeys, having a positive effect of the family’s carbon footprint.

I walk daily. It’s a break from my desk, it’s a break from my young children, it’s a time for just me.

When I worked in the office, I’d choose to get the train which takes around 45 minutes longer than driving to reduce my environmental impact. My husband usually walks or cycles to work too, and as a family, we always try to avoid taking the car whenever we can.

It’s not healthy to sit staring at a screen all day, stuck to a desk. In a normal office environment, we’d socialise whilst working and it’s not quite the same when you’re sitting at home on your own. That’s why I now prioritise getting my daily walk in – I feel much more productive afterwards.

Walking gives me time for just me and my thoughts. If I didn't walk daily, I'd really miss it. It would badly impact my mental health and ability to handle challenges at home and at work.

Paths for All is such a vital resource for the community, I started volunteering around 6 years ago and continue to do so as and when it is possible. It’s a great opportunity for people to get out of the house and fall in love with their local area.

Orla volunteers as a Walk Leader with the ‘Walk Forth Bumps and Babies’ group in Stirling.

Orla's story is part of our Humans of the Walk campaign during COP26. Check out the full campaign gallery here.