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Let’s walk! Slow the pace and get to know Calgary one step at a time

 By Lori Beattie
Lori is the author of a number of books, most recently the book Calgary’s Best Walks. She will also give free guided tours to anyone who purchases her most recent book directly from her website!
I love to walk, everywhere and anywhere. Walking makes me happy. I enjoy the fresh air, the time to think, and the freedom to explore. I also love the simplicity. You don’t need special gear or skills to go for a walk, just practical footwear, a few layers of
clothes, and the ability to put one foot in front of the other: left, right, left, right.
Screen Shot 2015-10-08 at 11.59.49 PMThere is something for everyone on an urban hike
Exploring Calgary on foot is ideal for anyone, no matter his or her interests. Taking a walk in the city can help you satisfy your desire to explore and experience wilderness, art, and gardens; rivers, reservoirs, hills and flatlands; as well as the urban core and quiet communities, on trails that end at a local café, restaurant or ice cream shop. It is this vast range of treasures in such a small space that makes walking in Calgary so enjoyable, so stimulating.
Creativity flows when you walk, and long after the walk in finished
Walking outside is the perfect way to clear your head, to shake up your routine and put things into perspective. The fresh air and big blue Alberta skies do wonders for your mood. And if you are in a rut, a walk is all you need. Research shows that creativity
flows when you walk. Perhaps it is the increased oxygen or the change of scenery, but it has been proven that post-walk creativity continues long after the walk is complete.
Screen Shot 2015-10-09 at 12.00.08 AMWhy does a walk in the woods feel so good?
For those of you inebriated on electronics, the glare of the glass screen consuming all of your waking hours, putting down the device and going for a text- and ping-free walk in Calgary’s wilderness is like hitting the restore button for your mind. Walking in the woods offers a break from distractions. The most convincing argument for the peace we feel in nature is that the flowers and the birds never aggressively grab our attention. A walk in the woods gives our multi-taking brains a break and we are free to observe.
Get to know Calgary by connecting communities on foot
Walking is s a great activity to engage in with your kids and your family. Conversations flow when you walk. What else is there to do but chat and observe? Encourage friends to join you on your urban walkabout by promising a post-walk café or picnic stop. Walk through neighbourhoods and observe or interact with gardeners, front-porch sitters, or other walkers. See and be seen on a walk along a bustling commercial street.
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Walking is the perfect exercise. Walking is prevention and keeps you fit
Living actively, integrating walking into your day, will keep will you healthy and fit for life. Research shows that a simple walk, or multiple short walks, prevents or delays the onset of most chronic diseases like heart disease, diabetes and Alzheimer’s. Your daily
walkabouts also keep you fit for more adventurous pursuits, like hiking in the Rockies or taking an active vacation. Explore
Calgary on foot-surprises await!
The fun part about walking in Calgary is the unknown, the surprises around unexplored corners. Having self-propelled mini-adventures in your own backyard will keep you healthy and happy. So get out there and explore, find the hidden stairways, pathways, and independent neighbourhood cafés. Let’s walk!
Nicknamed the “Queen of the Urban Hike” by the Calgary Herald, Lori Beattie is the best selling author of Calgary’s Best Walks
Calgary’s Best Hikes and Walks and Calgary’s Best Bike Rides and Trails. She is the host of CTV Morning’s Walking Wednesdays. Lori leads year-round city walks and Rocky Mountain hikes, snowshoe and ski days with her company Fit Frog Adventures.
Calgary's Best Walks Front Cover

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