Posts

Best Ways to Preserve Nature while Hiking

Hiking and walking is a great way to get healthy exercise and clear your head. People of all ages and abilities can enjoy the scenic views and trail hikes at Piedmont Park, which offers some of the most beautiful nature preserves in the area.

If you’ve visited Piedmont Park before, you know its popular destinations, such as the Meadow or the Dog Parks. Just north of those locations though, there’s a path that leads you through a tucked away tree-lined expansion to the Park. Now you have 53 acres of land to explore! This land expansion happened in 2011 to boast nature trails and conservation areas.

When you venture on the trails, it’s very important that you not disturb or destroy the natural landscape and the delicate ecosystem of the area. Make sure that you follow these rules, so that you can preserve that natural beauty and not cause any harm to the animals or plants that here.

If You Pack it In, Pack it Out

Everything you bring to the trail should leave with you. That includes things like water bottles, food wrappers and containers, tissues, and any other debris that you might have brought with you. Even food should be taken out with you again. There are trash and recycling bins once you return to the main areas of the Park.

Don’t Feed the Wildlife

It’s very exciting to see all kinds of wildlife when you’re out in the forest that you may not see in everyday life, such as our rare species of birds and our Eastern Screech Owl.

However, you shouldn’t try to feed these animals while you are out on your hike. It may seem harmless, but animals may rely on humans for that food in the future. It’s similar to giving your dog a piece of meat from your plate during dinner. Do you think your dog will want to go back to eating dog food?

So, it’s a good practice to observe and admire the wildlife from a distance. It will keep you and the animals safe from harm.

Keep Dogs on a Leash

While dogs are some of the best hiking companions you could ever ask for, they aren’t always on their best behaviors. You should always have your dog on a leash in case you find something that may tempt your dog to run away.

Be sure to keep your dog to the right of the trail to avoid any potential collisions with other trail users. No one wants to see waste when they are walking the trail — it’s unsightly and unsanitary. So, don’t forget to bring those doggie bags and take any dog waste out with you. Keep the trail clean for others to enjoy, too!

Stay on the Trail

If you are walking on a designated trail or path, you shouldn’t venture off into other areas. While it may seem harmless, you risk damaging the plants of the surrounding area. Those plants are a major source of food for a lot of animals! Not only that, but just stepping off the trail can contribute to erosion. It will leave a beaten down path that will entice others to do the same.

When you skirt a muddy area, you are broadening the trail and causing damage. Head down the center of the hiking trail and through the mud to prevent trail widening.

Choosing Your Clothes

Did you know that even the clothes you wear can affect the environment? It’s highly encouraged to wear eco-friendly clothing. Be sure to wear clean clothing and shoes before each new hike so you don’t take along any insects or seeds that aren’t native to the other area.

If you’re looking to get rid of clothes, don’t just toss them! Many articles of clothing consist of synthetic, non-biodegradable fiber and will just pile up in the landfill. Instead, consider donating your unwanted clothing, or recycle them in a textile bin.

Remember that your actions, small or large, have an enormous impact on our environment. It’s up to you to make the changes necessary to protect it.

As Franklin D. Roosevelt famously said:

“A nation that destroys its soils destroys itself. Forests are the lungs of our land, purifying the air and giving fresh strength to our people.”

Guest Post by Personal Injury Law

Author’s Note: The information in this article was provided by Personal Injury Law, an organization dedicated to providing the public with information about personal injury and safety information. Nothing in this article should be construed as legal advice, and it is intended for informational use only.

How to Build Running Stamina

Recent news releases announced that the City of Atlanta will be the host of the USA’s women’s and men’s marathon Olympic qualifying team race for the 2020 games. It’s an exciting time to be a runner in Atlanta, and no doubt many people will also be inspired by the incoming onslaught of Olympic-caliber marathoners hoping to make the US Olympic marathon team that they, too, may consider lacing up their shoes for the first time.

When you’re new to running, though, it can be really intimidating to figure out how to start or where to start. Most people intuitively know, for example, that they’re probably not going to be able to start at zero and suddenly just go run a marathon the next day. How you get to that point, though, remains a mystery for many people. They may want to run a marathon themselves one day, but how they go about doing that — how you can build running stamina when you’re currently at zero — is a bit of an enigma.

Building running stamina isn’t as mysterious as you may think. Below, I’ll provide some tips and guidelines that will help you build your running stamina slowly and safely. Who knows? Maybe by the time the Olympic marathon trials are in Atlanta for the 2020 Olympics, you’ll have even finished your first endurance race by then!

Some tips to help you build running stamina include the following:

Before anything, talk to your doc. Just to be on the safe side, particularly if you haven’t seen your physician in a while, go in and get his/her blessing. Make sure that running will be a physically safe endeavor for you and that you don’t have some lurking ailment or illness under the hood, beyond your line of vision. It’s better to be safe than sorry.

Start very, very small. When you’re starting at zero, it may be maddening to think that you’re going to start off doing very little and staying at that level for a while before advancing. However, doing so is imperative so you can keep your injury risk at bay. When you begin, aim for 5 minutes of movement, interspersed between walking and running breaks. We call these “run-walk” or “walk-run” ratios. If, for example, you want to go out for 5 minutes, see what it feels like to run for 1 minute and then run for 30 seconds, and then repeat for the entirety of the 5 minute timeframe. In time, slowly but surely you will likely find that you can decrease your walking ratio and increase your running ratio. In addition, you may find that you’ll be able to bump-up your overall time, too, maybe going from 5 minutes, to 10 minutes, to 15, and so on.

Start very, very slowly. Don’t get trapped into thinking that in order to run, you have to sprint, as that can’t be further from the truth. When you’re building your running stamina, you should focus on keeping your pace easy and conversational — really, you should be able to sing and talk while you do it. Sprinting can be an effective way to get faster, but for now, when you’re focusing on building your stamina, it’s more important to keep the fire burning sloooooooowly.

Make incremental gains. It’s important to be patient with yourself as you embark on this new endeavor. Don’t think that you can make huge jumps right off the bat because you’re probably going to feel pretty sore as your body gets used to this new task that you’re asking of it. Maybe you’ll go out to run/walk for 5 minutes for an entire week before bumping up one of your days to 10 minutes or 15. You’re really an experiment of one here, so what works for your training partner may not work for you, and that’s ok. Keep in touch with your body and all the feedback that it’s giving you.

Join a training group. Finally, one of the best — and most fun! — ways to build your running stamina will be to join a local training group. It’ll be a great place for you to meet other runners with similar goals, and if you’re lucky, you’ll even find someone who’ll be run/walking similar paces as you. The mileage and time passes by so much more quickly — and so much more enjoyably! — when you get to share it with someone else. It’ll be like the healthiest happy hour you can have. Plus, you’ll be working under the supervision and guidance of a knowledgeable and qualified coach who can help to ensure that you’re progressing safely.

These are just a handful of the ways that you can work to build your running stamina. The underlying principle here is the importance of building your stamina slowly, cautiously, and conservatively. As long as you do that, you’ll be able to enjoy your miles and trails for years to come.

Happy trails to you!

Guest Post by Jane Grates

AUTHOR’S BIO: JANE GRATES

I love to run for marathons and trail running events. Producing at the sweet spot between beauty and mathematics to save the world from bad design. She also loves to write reviews on Runnerclick.

 

Strength is Sexy…Time to Flex

In the past women had been taught to think that lifting weights will make you bulky or masculine.  It wasn’t until recently that we began to dabble in light toning and strength training.  The beauty of strength training is that you are always in control of how and what you want to look like.  It is important to have a systematic way of strength training that is both sustainable and safe.  Systematic, safe weight training means lifting an appropriate amount of weight while applying the proper repetitions through the full range of motion.  This is how my clients and class will move into weight lifting in the coming month.  I encourage everyone to take a reputable fitness class or work with a certified fitness trainer to ensure a proper training protocol when doing strength training.  In the meantime, here are some tips for the proper way to begin a strength training program with weights:

  1. Begin with light weights, high repetitions and full range of motion. Moving through the exercise with weights in the full range of motion is how to prep the ligaments, joints and tendons.
  2. All workouts should be full-body.  Encompassing low-body, upper-body and abdominal work.
  3. Back and Biceps, Chest and Triceps. Don’t forget legs and core. Although I advocate full-body workouts be specific as to how you group your exercises.
  4. The heart is a muscle to. Begin or end your workout with some form of exercise that is solely to increase your heart-rate, i.e a pre-workout run, 20 minutes on the bike after etc.
  5. Slightly increase either in volume of intensity every 3 to 4 weeks.  This is sure you are accomplishing steady gains.

Begin your strength journey with the Piedmont Park Conservancy and Love You Healthy’s LIFT classes! Learn More

Guest Post by Saidah Jones, Love You Healthy

Events

Nothing Found

Sorry, no posts matched your criteria