Physical activity is vital to your overall wellbeing. Study after study has shown that adults who stay active are healthier, feel better, and have a lower chance of developing cardiovascular disease, diabetes, and cancer.
According to the CDC, adults need a minimum of 2 hours and 30 minutes of moderate-intensity activity or 1 hour and 15 minutes of vigorous-intensity activity every week. Unfortunately, over 80% of adults are missing that mark, contributing to widespread health issues across our population.
But here’s the good news, you can help change that number today – and you don’t have to join a gym or run a 5K every morning to do it. Here in Alabama, we’re blessed with an abundance of options for outdoor recreational activities that can help you stay active and have fun at the same time. Here are a few of our suggestions.
Take A Hike
Hiking is a great way to lose weight, reduce stress, and enjoy Alabama’s beautiful, sprawling landscape. Lucky for us, our state is loaded with scenic trails and outdoor rec centers for hikers of every skill level. Check out some of these trails near and around our offices in Anniston, Heflin, and Atalla.
- Heflin Spur – A wide open, 5.6-mile trail in Heflin that also acts as a spur of the Pinhoti Trail. Makes for a great day trip.
- Devil’s Den Falls – A short, scenic in the Cheaha State Park that take hikers to a beloved natural swimming hole up the mountain.
- Noccalula Falls Park – This popular community location in Etowah County is home to Black Creek Trails – a collection of 15 beautiful hiking trails of varying difficulties.
- Pine Glenn Campground – Located in Cleburne County, Pine Glenn is a popular spot for outdoor enthusiasts in East Alabama. The campground acts as a trail head to the Pinhoti Trail and makes a perfect day hike.
Go For A Float
Aside from being an excellent heart-healthy activity, kayaking is a great way to have fun and stay cool during those extra hot days of the Alabama summer. So skip the lap pool and float the picturesque Terrapin Creek instead. There are currently three different outfitters situated along the creek: No Worries Kayak Rentals, Redneck Yacht Club, and Terrapin Outdoor Center.
All three are open 7 days a week and provide rentals and shuttle service.
Ride Your Bike
Over the years, Anniston and Calhoun County have worked to become an epicenter for cycling in the South. These days, cyclists have tons of options – from paved street trails to rugged mountain terrain.
Regular cycling has shown to increase cardiovascular fitness, joint mobility, and flexibility all while burning fat and reducing stress. Check out some of these local bike trails near our offices:
- Coldwater Mountain – This system features 35-40 miles of purpose-built, singletrack trails of varying difficulties. Since opening, Coldwater Mountain has become a hotspot for cyclists all over the southeast.
- Chief Ladiga Trail – The Ladiga Trail is a 33-mile, paved rail-trail that runs from Weaver Road in Anniston to the Alabama/Georgia state line. The smooth surface and low elevation make this a perfect trail for the whole family.
- Sardis Recreational Trail – This half mile, asphalt bike trail can be found in Sardis City. After your ride, you can stop in at the picnic area and refuel with a snack!
We hope you’ll take the time to check out these outdoor rec options and others around East Alabama, but we want to stress that the most important thing is to STAY ACTIVE in whatever capacity you can. Start a garden, walk around the park, go for a swim, or put on some music and dance. Just remember to keep moving!