Consumers covering the distance

While it is true that we spent a fair amount of time walking around the Wal-Mart this afternoon, we were not there to participate in any door-busting or price-cutting of goods.

Actually, we were there because it is a large enclosed indoor space.

My wife is participating in a count-your-steps fitness program that records her progress onto a little unit attached to her belt. The data is then transferred to the web, tabulated for posterity, and shared with the world. She quite enjoyed it this summer, logging many days in excess of the recommended 10,000.

But of course it’s cold now.

So we laid out a route in the local super store and clocked our progress around the perimeter. We found that you can cover the whole store in 1000 steps. Since we were interested in adding as many steps as we could, we made the next round in zig-zag fashion. We went up and down most of the aisles in automotive, electronics, grocery, and women’s clothes. The final tally was well over 5,000 steps. (That’s about 2 1/2 miles.)

In the future we may also try Menard’s, and Farm & Fleet, which have a similar footprint.

There is a downside. It cost me $20 for two pairs of gloves and a bra. A weekly walk of this kind could end up costing me hundreds… Which leads to the question : If I pay the money up front, do I still have to do the walking?

Current location : Rantoul, Il. Famous for Chanute Air Force Base (where I was born). Named for Octave Chanute, railroad engineer and aviation enthusiast.

Miles to go : 804

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2 Responses to Consumers covering the distance

  1. Definitely, switch to Menard’s or Fleet Farm. There are fewer opportunities for impulse shopping at those places, though I always used to end up with a few extra items in my cart when I went to Menard’s. (Leather chopper mitts on sale! Ooh, I need another ice scraper for the car, and they’re on sale for $1.99 today!) I didn’t like Wal-Mart however because I had so many students who had awful stories about working there.

    No mall out where you are? I used to hike the nearby mall when I got cabin fever, but I always left my purse at home to prevent those sudden “ooh, that’s really cute!” urges to buy.

    • Doug says:

      Perhaps we indulge our hunting and gathering instinct? I hope it’s harmless. Besides, the really expensive things are still over there on the shelves. Is it impulse buying if you were going to buy one anyway? I don’t know. The experiment definitely requires more controls.

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