My Walking Vlog on YouTube. What I’ve Learned

Updated: April 21, 2022

A pair of ASICS Excite 7 walking shoes, well, there actually runners, to the left with a hand-drawn YouTube logo on the right. Photo by RyanC
A pair of ASICS Excite 7 walking shoes, well, there actually runners, to the left with a hand-drawn YouTube logo on the right. Photo by RyanC

I started my walking vlog for my passion for walking, making videos, and a form of social accountability. I'll probably update this post again in the future. 

Here's a little bit of Walking Background - Walking Vlog

I started walking because I ruptured both Achilles tendons between 2010 - 2017. The doctor looked at me and said, "Take it easy," with a stern look in his eye. So, I decided to make walking my main form of exercise.

In 2017, I attended film classes and continue to take them today.

20 Minutes to Film, Edit, Upload, and Post to YouTube or I Don't Do It - Walking Vlog

I used to film a sequence of scenes on my walks (Longer than a minute). In doing this, the upload time and editing took too long. I don't do that anymore with the walking vlogs (Walking gear reviews are a different story). I film one small part of my walk and upload it to YouTube Shorts. The upload time is fast, and I'm done everything in under 20 minutes. I'm here to walk, not stress about the walking vlog.

YouTube Editors Over External Editors - Walking Vlog

If I'm out on a walk and need to film. I'll use the YouTube Shorts creative tool editor right in YouTube. If I'm filming long-form content (longer than one minute). I'll trim parts of the walking video, (for example, walking gear reviews), with the YouTube desktop editor located in the YouTube Studio. I barely touch my external iMovie Macbook editor.

Random Walking Videos or Journey? - Walking Vlog

At the beginning of my YouTube channel. I was putting up random walking vlogs. Over time, I switched and created something that would challenge my walking life, and be more interesting (hopefully) to viewers. I decided to do the "Road to 1000 Walk Days." Which in reality, from the date of this post, will take another three or so years. So now, it makes my walking channel one long walking vlog. The 1000 walk days also becomes my social accountability. I think this is good, keeps me motivated.

Walking Burnout? or YouTube Burnout? - Walking Vlog

When it comes to YouTube burnout vs walking burnout, walking burnout would win this marathon. I walk every day and I won't be able to keep up with all the walking "adventures," if I was uploading everything to YouTube. So, there is no shortage of walking content, just walking energy.

What's More Work, My Walking Vlog on YouTube or Blog? 

Originally, I started the Youtube channel as a solo venture, but over time, I found that having a blog with a top-down domain gives my walking vlog more substance. So, In my situation, I did both. The reality is, my blog is clunky and I have to maintain all the content. It's definitely not a "set it and forget it," project. The Youtube channel is much less maintenance. I post my videos, thumbnail, and description, and I'm mostly done. So, I would say my walking blog is much more work than my vlog on Youtube. 

What Gets More Traffic, My Blog, or Vlog on YouTube?

The short answer from my data is, that the Youtube vlog gets more traffic than my blog at this time. Almost all the Youtube traffic is coming from Youtube Shorts. My number one source of traffic for my blog comes from Google organic search. It took about one year to get traffic to my blog. As for my Youtube vlog, it took much less time, I would say about three months or so. Either way, both the vlog and blog are slow burns. 

My walking vlog on YouTube. 

Has My Walking Vlog Been Worth It on YouTube?

Yes, the walking vlog gives me a bit more motivation to move more in the day. As for choosing the YouTube platform, I find YouTube is fine. I like all the options YouTube gives in terms of discoverability. For example, some of my long-form content does well with search discoverability. And YouTube shorts can generate views on the Shorts shelf. The community tab is also a nice feature to have for text and images. Also, having search traffic keeps some of my videos alive much longer. 

What About Instagram, TikTok, Pinterest, or Twitter? Why Not Start My Walking Vlog on One of Those Platforms?

Well, I find I can't handle too many platforms. Each social media platform has its own rules, creator incentives, audience, vibe, and the list goes on. I was experimenting on Instagram, but I'm just a bit lazy. In saying that, maybe I'll take look at other platforms in the future.  

How Do You Get Paid From Your Walking Vlog?

At this point, I'm running ads on my blog. 

How I Started My Walking Vlog on YouTube

  • Ideas - Before I started the walking vlog on YouTube, I needed to get better at putting my thoughts on paper. I did take a course on Udemy a few years back called "How to come up with killer business ideas: complete workshop." (No affiliation). I took this course in December of 2019, and it helped. 
  • I started the YouTube channel - I was learning from the YouTube Academy back in the day, but I think YouTube has the YouTube Creators ecosystem now. I don't know anything about the YouTube Creators.
  • Simplify - I needed to simplify my production schedule for videos so they were easier to make and didn't take forever to upload. YouTube Shorts helps in this department. I've been doing YouTube shorts with my long-form content on the same channel. It's been working out ok. 
  • YouTube Analytics - I didn't know much about YouTube Analytics, and I'm still learning. YouTube Analytics can go into quite a bit of detail. 
    • Some of the metrics I look at in YouTube Analytics
      • Returning visitors vs new visitors - Audience tab (Desktop)
      • Top videos for the period - Overview tab (Desktop)
      • Device type - Advanced mode (Desktop)
      • Key moments for audience retention - Engagement tab (Desktop)
      • Average views per viewer by video - Advanced mode (Desktop)
  • Habits - I needed to get better at creating simple habits for the walking vlog. For example, uploading consistently. I did listen to an audiobook called "Atomic Habits." By James Clear (blog post). I'm still working on it. 
  • YouTube Rhythms - I needed to get used to the YouTube rhythms. For example, some weeks my walking vlogs would have views, other weeks nothing much. I noticed over time the YouTube rhythms are normal. I try not to let it bother me. 
  • A Deadline - At first, I didn't want to have a deadline for my walking vlog project on YouTube, but I did set a deadline to look at the project and make sure to give myself a reality check.
    • Things I ask myself on the deadline of my walking vlog.
      • Is this walking vlog a headache? 
      • How is my mental and physical health when it comes to this walking vlog?
      • Is the walking vlog growing more organically? Or am I on the YouTube treadmill with little growth? 
      • Do I still want to do this walking vlog in 10 years?
  • Staying Connected - YouTube has a channel called, "Creator Insider." They usually update every week. The YouTube Blog is also good. 

Quick disclaimer: I'm not a professional by any means, please talk to your local doctor when doing any physical exercise.