Ways to Stay Active This Spring
With the arrival of spring, most of us want to get out of the house and enjoy the warmer weather. After you’ve spent months indoors, your activity level may not be what it used to be, and maybe it wasn’t great before that. Keeping your body and mind active is crucial to your overall health. You can enjoyably achieve your activity goals in ways that don’t include a gym membership.
Take a Walk! One of the easiest and most common ways to increase your activity level is by walking. Walking is a versatile exercise that can be adjusted to fit your goals. We Cherokee County residents have an extensive parks system available to us. Warmer weather encourages us to visit these parks and enjoy the natural beauty they offer. By changing pace, choosing hilly or flat terrain, and walking with weights, you can create a walking exercise suited to your needs. With many parks to choose from, you can keep your walks interesting by seeing new parts you might have missed before. Visit PlayCherokee.org for a list of county parks.
Dive In! Swimming is an excellent form of exercise but can seem impossible without a pool in your backyard. Fortunately the Cherokee County Aquatic Center has two indoor pools and an outdoor leisure pool. The indoor twenty-five-yard and fifty-meter pools are open year-round, while the outdoor pool is open seasonally. Fitness classes are available that use swimming as exercise. G. Cecil Pruitt Community Center Family YMCA in Canton also has indoor and outdoor swimming and fitness classes available for members.
Get Strong! Strength training may look overwhelming, filled with images of buff body builders. Strength training, though, is one of the most beneficial components of exercise, and it doesn’t have to involve powerlifting to have an impact on your overall health. While you can purchase five- or ten-pound dumbbells online, you can also use textbooks, soup cans, or heavy water bottles for strength-training purposes. Strengthening your muscles supports mobility and joint health, which aids in all aspects of life.
Hit the Dirt! Spring brings flowers and fresh vegetables. Gardening is fun and allows us to soak up vitamin D, breathe fresh air, and boost the immune system. It may also result in reaping fresh fruits and vegetables that aid in nutrition. Many books and online articles help novice gardeners get started. If you can’t bend over to plant seeds, bulbs, or seedlings, set up a gardening table for easy working and use flowerpots instead of putting your plants in the ground.
Break out the bike! As seasons change, biking is a great way to enjoy nature while exercising. It can be done solo or with the family. For more adventurous types, mountain biking trails are available at Blankets Creek and Olde Rope Mill Park in Woodstock. If you prefer flatter routes, some parks, including Heritage Park in Canton, offer paved biking paths. Biking strengthens muscles while improving balance and mobility. Staying active is critically important to health and well-being. Embrace the warmer weather and enjoy a new activity. Reframe your thinking about exercise and focus on practical ways to incorporate more activity into everyday life. Make spring the season to Enjoy Cherokee!
Katie Wheeler is a Canton native, born and raised. She has a degree in English Writing and Publishing and loves both the creativity and structure that comes with writing. Katie also works as the Managing Editor for Enjoy Cherokee and is passionate about the interesting stories found within our community. She loves spending time with friends and family and venturing to new places.