y dog has been able to go on more walks with me lately even though, at her advanced age of 8, she is limited to just two miles of walking outdoor in the heat and humidity. Why? Because my walking buddy Kris and I have found some great shady trails to walk on in a park not far from home.
The trails are in Castlewood State Park which is bordered on two sides by the Meramec River just west of the Mississippi River in St. Louis, MO. I live about an easy 10 minute drive from the park. Kris is far more familiar with the park than I as she is an avid biker and many cyclists use the parks one street and many trails. The park is large and has many miles of walking/biking trails, including miles of totally flat trails, some paved walkways, rugged trails that go up and down a scenic river bluff, and about 200 stairs in the side of the bluff that overlooks the river.
The Meramec River as it nears St. Louis is not the most beautiful of rivers. But, there is often a nice breeze there and the abundant water supply feeds the numerous tall trees that provide lots of shade on the trails. Entering the shady trails, one immediately notices that the ambient temperature drops about 10 degrees. That temperature drop provided by the shade along with the river breeze make this a singularly delightful place to walk. We have gone there to walk every day we could over the last 10 days.
This morning, the park was busier than we have seen it. Many cyclists and a lot of young families were on the trails. Groups of friends were wading in the river, others were fishing or boating, and many were sunning themselves on the shore. In addition there was a group of people preparing to set off on surf boards with paddles. Not sure what this sport is called, but it looks like fun! Great upper body workout, I'm thinking.
So, Kris and I have explored many of the park's trails. We have chosen our favorite so far and it's a loop that takes us about 40 minutes to complete. We can add to that if we wish by including another section of the trail that will bring us back to our car in another 15 minutes or so. We are able to walk at a pretty good pace despite the nature of the trail. There are roots, overhang, some rocks, and the occasional something-or-other plunk in the middle of the trail. But, if we stick to the flatter areas, we get in a pretty good walk.
We have also been accompanied on our walks by all manner of wildlife - mostly 4 year old humans and lots of deer. Today, we walked under a railroad track in a small tunnel built in 1930. The trails are scenic with frequent views of the river, friendly walkers and cyclists, and a great location not far from our homes. Bet you've got something similar near your home. Check it out!
Remember my 100% GUARANTEE. Should you decide to stop walking and resume your old habits, I personally guarantee that you'll get back 100% of your former life - your pain, your lifestyle, your attitude. You can trust the information you find here. It's from a dedicated walker. Trust me and your life will get better! I promise.
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