Some people might equate the “virtual walk” to sitting on the couch while watching Jazzercise or Power Yoga on TV, but I think that the spirit behind the creation of virtual walking and the intent behind participation is far greater than visual stimulation or entertainment. See the Reuters’ story: “Walking for good cause without ever leaving home.”

Here are a couple of excerpts from the article:

Some 1,500 women began a 31-city virtual walk across the United States on Monday (October 1, 2007) to benefit breast cancer courtesy of a computer, an avatar, and a $3 donation.

The “Gal to Gal Virtual Walk” is the brainchild of Oregon entrepreneur Jeanne Fitzmaurice, who created a foundation in 2005 to raise money for patients in the final stage of breast cancer after two close friends died of the disease.

Supporters design their own Gal avatar, or Internet representation, for a $3 donation, add clothes and accessories and a personal story and then watch themselves walk from Boston to San Francisco against a changing daily landscape.

Fitzmaurice said the idea was to help busy women, no matter what their physical condition, lend their help in a fun, creative way during October’s Breast Cancer Awareness Month. She hopes that one million walkers will sign up.

Do you think that virtual walking takes away some of the sweat and hard work that “real” walkers undertake for charity? Is virtual walking something that you might considering in the future?