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Getting Active this Fall!


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We love to bike as a family.  It does help that we have amazing trails right out our backyard, but nevertheless, it is one of our favourite things to do as a family in the Fall.   Simcoe County has numerous trails to take advantage of throughout each season!    We really are quite lucky not to have to travel too far to enjoy the fresh outdoors and get some exercise as a family.

Here are a few trails that we have tried….we’ve taken the overview from http://cyclesimcoe.ca/

  1. Lake Country Oro-Medonte Rail Trail
  • Difficulty: Easy
    Length: 28 km (each way)
    Start: Woodland Drive (northern boundary of the trail, near Orillia) or 1st Line, off of Ridge Road (this marks the southern boundary of this trail, near Barrie).

    Embrace the outdoors; from active Osprey Nests to busy beavers in their Beaver Pond to quiet wetlands and Great Blue Herons; the flat and crushed gravel route, Lake County Oro-Medonte Rail Trail, linking the cities of Barrie and Orillia, definitely has something for those looking to connect with nature. And for those needing to cool off, take a quick detour to any one of our beaches and enjoy some of the cleanest waterfronts on Lake Simcoe!

2.  Rama/Ramara Trail

  • Difficulty: Easy
    Length: 5 km (each way)
    Start: Casino Rama

    The trail starts in the south at the historic fish weirs that were built by the Mnjikaning First Nation people. “Mnjikaning” is an Ojibway word meaning “the place of the fish fence”. The trail follows the abandoned CN rail line through pastoral countryside, crossing the Rama Road/Monck Road intersection, along Monck Road to the trail sign and extending to Mara-Rama Boundary Road. If you are coming from the City of Orillia, stop off at Casino Rama for some fun and excitement. If you are already staying at the Casino, be sure to take the trail in to Orillia and explore the beautiful downtown.

3. The Heather Pathway

Difficulty: Easy
Length: 17 km
Start: Sunset Point Park

The Heather Pathway is a series of Town trails linked together that creates a loop around the Town of Collingwood.  Millennium Park and Hen & Chickens boardwalk provide scenic views of Georgian Bay. Along the Heather Pathway you will find interpretive signs that describe the rich history of both the trail and the Town of Collingwood. For a break, stop at Sunset Point park; both food and washrooms available in season.

Hopefully the weather will stay warm enough that you will be able to enjoy the trails for a few more weeks at least…and then…well, you might be able to snowshoe them!!

Dr. Mercola, from http://fitness.mercola.com/ shares in a blog article that sadly, many families are not getting near enough physical activity in their day.  So, if biking isn’t necessarily something that you are able to do as a family, Dr. Mercola suggests 10 activities that will help your family get exercising together:

1. Go on a Scavenger Hunt

Make a list of challenges (find an orange leaf, get a neighbor’s signature, snap a photo of a playground, etc.), split your family into teams, set a time limit and then head off (on foot or on bike) to see who can complete the most items.

2. Have a Water Day

Tossing water balloons, splashing in a kiddie pool and running through a sprinkler in the backyard are fun ways to stay cool and active on a hot summer day.

3. Set ‘Mileage’ Goals for the Weekend

Decide as a family how many steps, or how many miles, you want to travel over the weekend, then have fun trying to reach the goal. You can use pedometers to measure steps taken while running errands, going on hikes, playing tag and more, and can challenge the family to increase your goal each weekend.

4. Wash the Car

Washing the car uses key core muscles and can be a fun, bonding experience, especially if you take time to cool off with the hose, too.

5. Family Olympics

Get together with a group of families and compete in events like hula-hoops, 50-yard dash, relay race, basketball shoot, and an obstacle course. You can even make it an annual event!

6. Family Fitness Classes

If you like a more structured routine, try a fitness class designed for families, like stroller workouts, mom/dad and baby workouts or family yoga.

7. Do Chores Together

Vacuuming, washing windows, weeding the garden, raking leaves and even doing laundry work your muscles and burn calories while teaching your kids the value of responsibility. Make chores fun by setting a time limit and turning up the music while you work together as a family.

8. Plan Seasonal Outdoor Activities

Swimming, biking, canoeing and hiking are great in the summer, while sledding, ice skating, building a snowman or skiing are fun – and great for your fitness goals – in the winter.

9. Play Together

Tag, hide-and-go-seek, hop scotch, doing cartwheels and dancing in the kitchen are so much fun you won’t even realize it’s exercise in disguise.

10. Try Out Family Sports

A backyard game of softball or volleyball, shooting hoops or taking a trip to a golf course give you quality time as a family while staying active.

Just 10 things that you might be able to schedule into your routine this Fall!

Enjoy the colours and the great fresh outdoors this month!


The Johnstons


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