Late June 2011 my most recent travels took me from Vancouver, British Columbia, in Western Canada up the stunningly beautiful Inner Passage to Alaska. About 30 fellow physicians joined me on this Princes Cruise for a medical conference called Sports Medicine at Sea. It was a fun meeting during which I spoke about the many health benefits of regular walking.

Of course, I took time each day for a walk – mostly on the 7th deck of our cruise ship that was reserved for walkers. And it really didn’t matter what time it was, because in the summer, the sun shines over Alaska day and night.

It was great to walk the deck and look out at magnificent glaciers as we made our way to the charming and remote Alaskan towns of Ketchican, Juneau (where I had a fantastic opportunity to hike to the Mendenhall Glacier) and Skagway. We also cruised in Glacier Bay and College Fiord and ended our voyage in Anchorage, Alaska’s largest city.

This trip reminded me just how important daily walking is to our total health – and how it enhances experiences, both ordinary and extraordinary. So please take time out of your life for a 30 minute walk, five days a week.