It has been an easy winter. For many people, it has also been a couch-potato winter. As the weather warms and spring approaches, the multi-purpose trail and the many hiking trails on Presque Isle will begin to get much busier with these couch potato walkers, runners, skaters and bike riders. If this year is like most in the past, many of these people will act like they never took the winter off. A great number of them will seem to think that they can just resume their activity levels exactly as they were last fall. Many will find that this idea is far from true.
Having been that couch potato all winter, some of you will find that you are now suddenly more klutzy than graceful. This is especially true of the many of us that are over fifty. That is also, of course, when you will become painfully aware of the inflammation associated with a sprained ankle, knee pain, foot pain or maybe even that bump on the head when your balance on your bike is a little off. These classic cases of inflammation result when your immune system sends a SWAT team of white blood cells to repair damaged tissue. The resulting redness and swelling are signs that the body is working on healing itself.
Let’s cover some ideas about spring trailblazing on Presque Isle. Today I will cover walking, in later articles I will talk a little bit about biking on the park. We are lucky here in Erie to have some wonderful places to walk. Think about it: you have Presque Isle, Frontier Park, Asbury Woods and the Bayfront Parkway Biking and Walking path from Erie’s eastside clear to Presque Isle.
Presque Isle is perfect for the dedicated walker because
- There are literally thousands of places to walk on the park.
- For the most part, the trails and paths are flat with only a few hills.
- You can walk 365 days a year.
- You can walk from 5 a.m. to dark.
- You will meet many other walkers on the park.
- You can walk in all kinds of weather.
- The sights you see change daily.
- There are restrooms available all year.
- Wildlife and birds are plentiful making walking more interesting.
- Water fountains are located all throughout the park.
- You can watch beautiful sunrise or sunset.
In order to work your way past the couch potato stage, you should consider a Plateau
Walking Plan. This should ease you easily through the stiff and sometimes painful early spring exercise blues. The Plateau Plan is a 4 week schedule that slowly conditions your muscles and prepares them for a more dedicated walking program.
Under the plan, there are four levels of walking which are:
- Warm-up – - very light (puttering around house speed).
- Normal – - whatever speed you would normally walk.
- Speed-up – - walking as if you are in a hurry (pushing it a little).
- Cool-down –fairly light (strolling leisurely).
Here is a chart that might help you work your way off the couch.
The program is a one hour, five day a week exercise.
|Warm up||5 min|
|4||Warm –up||5 min|
|4||Speed –up||15 min|
One last word, good shoes and proper socks are important to a dedicated walking program. Buy shoes that fit and socks that absorb and you can enjoy the program 365 days a year and avoid being that couch potato. Remember, you can walk on the park 365 days a year.
See you on the park!!
Categorised in: A walk on the Park
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