“The journey of a thousand miles begins with one step.” -Lao-tzu
Robert Sallis, MD, family physician and sports medicine doctor with Kaiser Permanente states “Walking is the most studied form of exercise. Multiple studies have proven that it’s the best thing we can do to improve our overall health and increase our longevity and function years.”
Regular exercise is the best prescription for healthy aging, but fewer than 1 in 5 adults, 65 or older gets the minimal amount……2 ½ hours of moderate-intensity aerobic exercise/week is all that is necessary to receive a benefit. Walking briskly or cycling at a level where you can talk, but not sing will produce the necessary results.
A little goes a long way…
A 13-year study published in the American Journal of Preventative Medicine “showed 139,000 adults that walked 2 hours/week were 26% less likely to die early compared to sedentary people.”
A study in the European Journal of Preventive Cardiology, “found older adults who exercised less than 30 min/day cut their risk of cardiovascular disease 14% compared to inactive people.”
Other benefits of walking:
- Energy booster
- Decreases blood sugar
- Mood enhancer
- Decreases joint pain
- Improved immunity
- Improved muscle tone
- Increased creativity
- Decreased Alzheimer’s Risk
- Reduced risk of breast cancer
- Decreased stress
- Increased life/longevity
It does not take a costly gym membership or require expensive equipment or loads of time. Walking requires little investment but pays huge dividends!
Set yourself up for success
- Start slowly and gradually increase your intensity, duration, and frequency.
- Invest in some comfortable/supportive apparel and good supportive shoes. Gimre’s Shoes can help you find the right pair of shoes for your feet.
- If you have any questions or concerns prior to beginning your walking program, please reach out to us, either at our Hillsboro or Banks facility.
4 Walking Trails around Hillsboro and Banks
Hillsboro/Washington county has some remarkable paths and trails to assist you with your walking enjoyment. Do not forget to nourish yourself after your workout.
Rock Creek Trail
Rock Creek Trail is a 1.6-mile paved trail that goes from Rock Creek Boulevard to Orchard Park. Add an additional mile of walking within Orchard Park by doing the loop on the paved trail and boardwalk. You can also enjoy playing a quick round of disk golf on the 9-hole course. Refuel your body afterward at Rock Creek Corner or McBee’s shakes crepes and cones.
Noble Woods Trail
Noble Woods Trail is a 1.1-mile paved loop inside a 40-acre nature park that runs along Rock Creek. We love that it is a loop so that you can easily walk as many laps as you want and always be close to your car to drive to one of our favorite refueling spots afterward. Close by you will find Mazama Brewing, Coyotes Bar and Grill, and Hero Sushi.
Jackson Bottom Wetlands
Jackson Bottom Wetlands has several trails for you to choose from that are of varying difficulty and level of slopes. The trails are a mix of gravel, bark dust, packed earth, and wood chips. You can find the trail map at the link above to plan your walk ahead of time, or visit the visitor center and talk to one of the helpful guides. After hitting the trails at the wetlands we like to head up the road to the Cruise In Country Diner for a bite to eat.
Banks/Vernonia Trail is 25 miles long stretching between the towns of Banks and Vernonia. This paved trail runs the length of an old abandoned railroad and consists of an 8-foot wide hiking/biking trail paralleled by a 4-foot wide horse trail. After doing your out and back walk you can enjoy a bite to eat at one of these Banks restaurants: Café 47, Hop Cycle Brewing, or Main Street Pizza.
Looking for a group to join?
Here are links to some local groups that may be able to assist you in your walking goals.
“You have to stay in shape. My grandmother, she started walking five miles a day when she was 60. She’s 97 today and we don’t know where the hell she is.” -Ellen DeGeneres