I wrote this back in April, when the weather was a bit up and down. Yet, I thought I would share it with you, now that the full transformation of nature has taken place.
Spring has finally sprung. I don’t know about you, but it gets me really excited, all the time. While the weather seems to be playing tricks on us these days, spring…is…here. True, it’s been a bit rainy lately, but I quickly think – April showers, bring May flowers. A saying that dates as far back as the early 17th century. It may now sound trite, yet has such profundity. For me, it is all about rejuvenation, transformation, metamorphosis, life, rebirth, awakening and I will add miracle. With spring’s transformative nature, I see a clear miracle.
With the excitement of spring, a few weeks ago, I eagerly, literally, put away all my winter clothes, boots, gloves, tuques – and donned my running shoes, light sweater, knapsack and stepped outside for a hike. I took a deep breath of the warm, earthy spring air…and felt elated. I almost did a little dance. While the snow was not completely gone, some areas were a bit muddy, yet that did not deter me or dampen my mood. No way. It was warm, it is spring, I had no heavy clothing on – in my books, that warrants celebration. My hike along the bike trails lasted over two hours. It felt great. At one point I thought we were lost, but no, two nice older ladies pointed us in the right direction. They were walking as well, in good humour. This goes to show that hiking is something that one can do at any age. You may simply need to adjust your pace accordingly. All you require is a good pair of walking shoes, comfortable clothing, a bottle of water depending on how far you’re walking, and anything that you think you may need on your walk. Just throw them in a little fanny pack and away you go.
I’m always in awe at how being in nature can boost one’s morale. Simply walking, enjoying the fresh air, the sunshine, the birds chirping, the flow of water and the quiet, peacefulness. This can be immensely therapeutic and energizing. Research has shown the health benefits of being immersed in nature (when you feel safe) – they have coined it ecopsychology. Bring your spouse, partner, friend, or a parent. Studies have found that exercising together is great for building and strengthening relationships. Hiking is just a different form of exercise – bonus, it gets us out in nature.
Looking for other ways to get out in nature while exercising? Try biking, rollerblading (I saw my first roller-blader on the bike path the other day), roller-skating (yes, it’s come back), gardening is another fun way, and more. Mix it up a little. If you’re unable to hit the bike trails, try walking along a quiet street away from the distraction, hustle and bustle of traffic (remember to be safe). If you can, take the time to get out, appreciate the beauty of spring. It may even be right there, in your backyard. Enjoy.
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