We've been looking for a way to exercise on weekends that doesn't seem quite as onerous as going to the gym. Gym classes are fun and all, but it seems a shame to be stuck indoors on nice summer weekends. Especially this year when nice days are so rare.
We enjoy biking, but cycling in single file isn't a particularly social activity – it's hard to talk to your fellow cyclists. And We've tried running, but it gets a bit too warm in the daytime to do that comfortably.
Then Junkii hit on the idea of hiking. Granted, it's not quite as intensive a cardio workout as some other activities, but it's beautiful, it's social, it's quiet, and we have a massive place to do it, just across the Ottawa River. So I picked up a detailed trail map at the National capital info centre – a map that cost $5 by the way! Stupid government – and we plotted our route for a Saturday trek into the wilds of Gatineau park.
We chose our trail wisely. The first half of the trek had some good ups and downs, and the second half (when we were getting tired) was mostly downhill. The whole hike took only about 1.5 hours. Not too bad for a first attempt. Now we've got a better sense how to read the map and how long the various trails will take to hike. Hopefully we can make this a regular weekend activity. We've already got several people that want to join us. My Mom and step dad want to join us from time to time, our friends Steve and Krista are up for it, and my colleague Awegechew would like to come along to change up his exercise routine. So we can socialize and exercise at the same time!
And the best part is, if we pick up some snow shoes, we should be able to continue this activity right into the winter!