We’ve talked about how important exercise is in your weight loss journey, and we also understand that doing so requires making time in your busy week. Getting to the gym is great! But have you thought about incorporating an outdoor workout or excursion to your weekly work-out routine? Running and/or hiking is a great way to get good exercise while enjoying the outdoors. Running, even just a light jog is a great way to get your body moving. Health Magazine says just thinking about running can feel overwhelming, but the benefit can outweigh the cons:
But running is also exhilarating—it can actually cause the same kind of neurochemical adaptations in the brain’s pleasure and reward centers as some addictive drugs (hence, the “runner’s high”), according to a 2015 study published in the journal Neuropharmacology. And it comes with big benefits: Even less than 50 minutes a week (whether that means one run or four 10-minute runs) may lower your risk of early death from all causes by 27 percent (and by 30 percent and 23 percent for cardiovascular disease and all types of cancer, respectively), according to a recent study published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine. On the mental front, running can be as effective as antidepressants in treating mild to moderate depression, according to a review of studies published in the journal Clinical Psychology: Science and Practice.
Consider some of these places to run or hike in Dallas/Fort Worth. No matter where you are in the metroplex, making a trip to one of these parks can make you feel like you’re miles away from home and in the heart of nature.
Perfect for a hike or run – alone, with a friend, or you can make it a hiking excursion for your whole family. The trails range in difficulty, so choose an easy trail if you’re hiking with young kids. It’s fun for the whole family!
From their website: The Cedar Ridge Nature Preserve is a scenic, rich in wildlife, slice of hill country. Formerly the Dallas Nature Center, the preserve spans 600 acres between Mountain Creek Parkway and FM 1382, a short 20 minutes from downtown Dallas. The natural habitat is jointly owned by the City of Dallas and Dallas County and features native trees, grasses, and wildflowers, displaying the natural beauty of the area.
Cedar Ridge Nature Preserve offers a variety of amenities for visitors. There are nine miles of walking trails ranging from easy to difficult, providing the perfect experience for any hiker or runner. Bird watching is a popular activity year around, and the preserve is home to the rare black-capped Vireo as well as a wide variety of wildlife. The center also features butterfly gardens and picnic areas.
For more information on the Cedar Ridge Nature Preserve visit Dallas County website.
Oak Cliff Nature Preserve is great for running, biking, or hiking. It’s a 121-acre natural area in the heart of Oak Cliff. Oak Cliff Nature Preserve has 8 miles of trails which consists of 6 loops. It’s a hidden gem in Dallas and very unassuming when you first approach the park. You’ll be pleasantly surprised when entering, however. It’s a beautiful and quiet park, perfect for a weekend morning hike or jog.
This destination features a pair of one-mile looped natural surface trails located just west of the intersection of Lake Ridge Parkway and Lynn Creek Parkway. The first trail, accessible through a small parking lot on the north side of Lynn Creek Parkway, is a natural surface trail that meanders through woodland and prairie, away from the hustle and bustle of the city. The second trail, located north of the first, is bursting with wildflowers from May through July and fall color in October and November.
Visit GPTX.org for more info on great places for walks or runs in Grand Prairie.