Places to Walk
Walking is the number one exercise most people get in retirement and is one of the best exercises you can do. Having places to walk near where you live that are accessible, safe and walker friendly is a big advantage.
Having places to walk in your community and neighborhood makes it easier to just leave your home on foot, to get started right away and save the hassle of driving to somewhere to walk. Plus if it starts to rain or other weather condition come up, well it’s not far back home.
Developers of 55+ Communities, especially Active Adult Communities like Del Webb communities, know that having places to walk in the community is important to those of us buying homes in their communities. They do an excellent job of including walking areas in their communities.
Since I am an avid walker myself, walking 3 to 5 miles about 5 times a week, I have discovered and benefited from having these lovely places to walk in and near my Del Webb Community. These are common in other active adult communities too and are a big reason to live in one.
Walking in the Community
Sidewalks in Community: There are sidewalks on both sides of the street.
Every house in the community has a sidewalk in front, that goes for miles around the streets and cul de sacs of the community. You can walk out your front door and just keep going for as long as you want.
Parkway Walking: Our Deaton Creek Parkway goes from the front entrance to the back entrance of the community and connects all the neighborhoods. From any house, it is a short walk to the parkway where you will be joined by other walkers on a wider path.
Community Trails: We have eight miles of trails within our community, through the woods and hills and along creeks and lakes of North Georgia. There is a handy trail map for reference. Trail entrances are located close to your home. This is a good way to get in touch with nature while getting your walking in.
Gym in Activities Center: Here you have the treadmills. For a bonus, walk down to the gym!
Walking Outside the Community
Friendship Road: Going outside our community entrance you will be on Friendship Parkway with LifePath, which provides a 10′ wide concrete pathways for about 10 miles. This connects our community, The Village at Deaton Creek, and Northeast Georgia Medical Center’s River Place to Chateau Elan in one direction and to Lake Lanier in the other direction. Many other active adult communities we have visited, have similar accessible paths just outside their communities too.
Recreation Center and Parks: I found the Mulberry Creek Community Center last year and walked on their indoor track all Winter. Here Mary Ann is making the rounds.
Cherokee Bluffs – Amenities: A 100-acre park that has large natural rock outcroppings as well as a pond, streams, and a view north of foothills. It is free to the public. Proposed Amenities: Amphitheatre, nature center, dog park, archery range, walking and horseback riding trails, pavilions, and a natural playscape structure. Address: 5867 Black Jack Road, Flowery Branch, GA 30542 -Only 7 miles from VDC.
Little Mulberry Park has 890 acres and 5 miles of paved multi-purpose and soft surface trails around 3 lakes and beautiful scenery! Just check with your local county parks, recreation and senior centers for walking opportunities.
Hall Country Parks listings.
Local 5Ks: These days they have a 5k walk/run event just about every weekend and many will be very close to you. In March, I walked the Road Atlanta 10K (about 6 miles), then did the Flowery Branch Disabled Vets 5K, followed by the local Flowery Branch High School 5K, followed by the Eagle Ranch 5K right next door. Oh, then the SC Senior Games 5K, the Georgia Games 5K, the USATFGA 5K, the USA Masters Games 5K and probably one of two more. Visit active.com for 5Ks near you. Even though it may be mostly runners, there is always plenty of us walkers too.
Mall Walking: In our community, we have a number of Mall of Georgia walkers. Walk in a comfortable environment in any weather. Open from 10AM to 9PM but you can join the Mall Walkers Group for access before the mall opens or just go when you want. They love mall walkers!
NE Georgia Medical Center: Our hospital right next door to our community asked me to start a local walking group to promote health. The group meets in the main lobby at 8am M-W-F. Your local hospital may have a walking group too.
Types of Walking
Individual Walking: Some people like to walk by themselves or with their pet. Walking and thinking. Walking to clear your mind. Walking on a trail through the woods to get in touch with nature. Everyone should take a solo walk in the Winter time, like I was doing in this photo.
Social Walking: Before I moved here to my Del Webb Community, I was an active member of Park Place, my local senior center and walked three times a week with the Park Place Pacers. We walked at the park where the center was located for about an hour and had the best time talking and walking. You can really make some friendships walking with others and the time just flies by.
Speed or Power Walking: Power walking refers to walking with a purpose as opposed to a slow, comfortable stroll along the seaside.
Race Walking: This is a competitive style of walking which I do. Race walkers must maintain good form and the knee of the lead leg as it passes under the body has to be straight and both your feet cannot lose contact with the ground at the same time. Race walking is an Olympic sport with distances of 20 kilometers for both men and women and 50 kilometers for men only. I will be watching the race walking events at the Rio Olympics this week on my TV. Mile for mile, race walkers burn more calories than runners.
Get Good Shoes: As well as insoles if you need them and lightweight athletic socks with a high wicking capacity.
Warm Up! Start slow and build up speed slowly. After walking 5 minutes, stop and stretch.
Safety: Take a cell phone with you and an id. If walking in the community, take your Owners ID. Let people know where you are going to walk.
I see I am getting a little carried away with this “Places to Walk” post, when all I wanted to say is that since I moved to an Active Adult Community, I have plenty of places to walk. It’s probably not mentioned or considered at time of purchase, but the benefit of places to walk nearby is one I am enjoying!