Destress Monday: Walk It Off

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From our friends at Destress Monday:

Make Monday an occasion to try some mindful walking when you need to de-stress for a few minutes between activities.

Any style of mindfulness is a robust antidote to stress. Mindfulness engages your normal powers of awareness and is something you can do anytime, anywhere. Here are some steps to follow for a short and easy session of mindful walking:

  1. Pick a time in your daily routine to practice mindful walking for at least five minutes.
  2. Concentrate on the physical sensations of walking – the sights, sounds, and feelings of each step.
  3. If your mind wanders, gently return your focus by repeating “left, right” as you walk.

As you walk, pay attention to the physical experience of walking. Bring your attention to your feet, noticing the sensations of walking itself. Witness the heel, ball, and toe of each foot as it makes contact, over and over, in every step. Bring your attention to the breath and the rhythm of your stride.

Mindful walking is a form of mindfulness, which is a way to focus on the present and not get caught up in thoughts of the past or worries about the future, giving you a greater sense of well-being and relaxation. This naturally slows down your heart rate and lowers your blood pressure. Its benefits include: stress reduction, reduced rumination, and increased focus.

This Monday, no matter where you’re going or how fast you’re walking, use this tip to de-stress and slow down, yet keep moving.

For information about walking in Decatur, visit decaturga.com/walking.

Something for All Ages at Decatur Active Living!

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Did you know that the Playbook is not just for kids? We have a plethora of activities, classes and athletic opportunities for all ages. In addition to athletics, open gym, pickleball, volleyball, indoor soccer and table tennis, we offer a number of free classes, workshops and field trips for active adults and seniors.

Check out the new Fall Playbook  and join us to keep active in Decatur!

Check Your Bike Before Each Ride

An easy way to make sure your bike is in good working order is to do an ABC Quick Check.

Air: Be sure you have enough air in your tires
Brakes: Look to see that your brake pads are not worn
Chain and Cranks: Pull on your cranks to see that they are not loose and look to see that the chain is not rusted and it is free of gunk
Quick Release: Make sure all quick releases are closed
Check: Take a slow brief ride to check that your bike is working properly

Move It Monday

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Exercising together makes your whole family stronger! There are many quick and easy exercises everyone can do to stay fit together. This Monday, we’ll give you a few to start so you can continue throughout your week. It’s time to get moving with your whole crew!

Not only is your exercise regimen good for you, but it may also be good for your family members. Research has found that if one person in the family starts exercising, others are more likely to join in.

To ignite your Monday and accommodate all fitness levels, we’ve come up with four mini-exercise ideas for the whole family to enjoy.

Monday Mile  Do a Monday Mile! Map out a round-trip mile from your front door. All you need is a pair of sneakers! Depending on your fitness levels, you can walk or jog.

Yoga Anywhere, Anytime Try a short sequence together. Yoga builds flexibility, mobility, strength, and addresses many muscle groups. Use core yoga postures like downward dog, tree, and child’s pose. Yoga will surely bring some smiles. Do yoga in bedin a chair, or on a yoga mat!

Charity Walk Is there a cause that stands out for your family? Pick a charity and train for an upcoming run/walk event. This is a great opportunity to cheer each other on, build togetherness, and do good!

Family Repetitions Strength training is a key component of overall fitness. To accommodate all fitness levels, use soup cans or weights to get strong together. Grab the weights to work your arms, legs, and back. In the living room or backyard, have your crew do repetitions of bicep curls, lunges, and finish off with some squats. Bring it all together with a smile!

Your best fitness partners are sitting across from you every day at the dinner table! Move It Monday encourages families all over the world to kick off the week with exercise. We’d love to hear from you! Share your ideas with us on FacebookTwitter, or Instagram.

Move It Monday: Organize a Monday Mile

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Take the first step! This Monday, organize a Monday Mile with your peers. It’s a good opportunity to exercise, meet new people, see old faces, and catch up!

Exercising in a group can improve the community’s motivation, socialization, and safety.  Walking or jogging is for all fitness levels and is one of the simplest exercises anyone can do, with benefits like building muscles, better cardiovascular health, and boosting the immune system and overall mental well-being.

For information on walking in Decatur, visit decaturga.com/walking.

Staying Safe on your Bicycle

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Artwork by Beatrice Prinkey, winner of the 2017 SRTS Bike Safety Poster Contest

The League of American Bicyclists five Rules of the Road prepare you for a safe and fun bicycling no matter where you’re riding.

FOLLOW THE LAW

Your safety and image of bicyclists depend on you. You have the same rights and responsibilities as drivers. Obey traffic signals and stop signs. Ride with traffic; use the rightmost lane headed in the direction you are going.

BE PREDICTABLE 

Make your intentions clear to everyone on the road. Ride in a straight line and don’t swerve between parked cars. Signal turns, and check behind you well before turning or changing lanes.

BE CONSPICUOUS

Ride where people can see you and wear bright clothing. Use a front white light, red rear light and reflectors when visibility is poor. Make eye contact with others and don’t ride on sidewalks.

THINK AHEAD

Anticipate what drivers, pedestrians, and other people on bikes will do next. Watch for turning vehicles and ride outside the door zone of parked cars. Look out for debris, potholes, and other road hazards. Cross railroad tracks at right angles.

RIDE READY

Check that your tires are sufficiently inflated, brakes are working, chain runs smoothly, and quick release levers are closed. Carry tools and supplies that are appropriate for your ride. Wear a helmet.

Move It Monday: Stay Hydrated!

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One thing to do before, during, and after a workout is hydrate. This Monday, keep in mind it’s always a good idea to stay hydrated, even if you don’t break a sweat. The best choice is always water!

Of its many benefits, water helps the heart pump blood, promotes digestion, prevents fatigue, and improves joint health. It’s a great way to stay hydrated and cool during your workouts. You can also blend it with lemon or lime juice to give it a natural citrus boost.

How much water should you drink? It’s a good question. Highly active people lose more water due to perspiration and weather conditions. Less active people who are healthy may not need to drink as much. Don’t wait until you’re thirsty to have a drink of water, signs of thirst could mean you’re already dehydrated. The easiest way to check for dehydration is to pay attention to the color of your urine: Pale and clear means you’re well hydrated, if it’s dark, you need more.

Take a moment this Monday to fill a glass and take a long, cool sip! It will perk you up and re-energize you because it’s refreshing. Continue the habit of drinking water throughout the week so you’ll be hydrated for your next work out or MondayMile.

Reach out on FacebookTwitter, or Instagram and let us know how you incorporate drinking water into your MoveIt Monday activities!

ARRRgust Third Friday Bike Ride: Ride Like a Pirate

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Decatur Third Friday Bike Ride will be held on Friday, August 17 at 6:30 pm. This month’s theme is “Ride Like a Pirate.” Last year’s ride was so much fun, we had to do it again!

We will ride 6 miles around Decatur neighborhoods at a social pace then visit a local watering hole for refreshments. Pirate garb is optional, but encouraged. Meet in front of the Decatur Recreation Center located at 231 Sycamore Street, Decatur, and be ready to put wheels down at 6:30 pm.

This ride is not recommended for children. Helmets are required for all city-sponsored rides.

For more information contact cheryl.burnette@decaturga.com or visit https://www.facebook.com/events/229244244387449/.

Move it Monday: Time to Move

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It’s time to take a stand and protest your chair! Use Monday as an opportunity to stand up more regularly. You will be toning your muscles and increasing flexibility and coordination.

Being a bit antsy could be a good thing! According to the Mayo Clinic, “Any extended sitting — such as at a desk, behind a wheel or in front of a screen — can be harmful.”  Over many years, sitting stacks up poorly against your heart, weight, circulation, and blood sugar, to name a few.

Start slowly. The point isn’t to stand all day but to remember to stand up or move around when you’ve been sitting for much too long.

  • Split your time between sitting and standing by letting a timer do all the work. Set it to remind you to stand up, move around, or stretch in 30-minute intervals.
  • On the phone? Stand up or pace.
  • Get a glass of water! Use hydration to remind you to get up.
  • At the office, stand up in meetings and suggest walking and talking instead of sitting.
  • At home, get up off that couch! Fit some steps in while watching TV, either by pacing or walking in place.
  • Do some standing yoga poses between long bouts on the computer.

Starting on Monday then continuing throughout the week, be creative and create excuses to get up more from a desk or couch. It will improve your posture, activate your metabolism, and can help you be more alert. Find us on social media to get more out-standing ideas! FacebookTwitter, or Instagram.

Riding on the Sidewalk

Riding on the sidewalk is not always the safest choice. When you are riding on the sidewalk, you also have to deal with many hazards: pedestrians, street furniture, signs, newspaper boxes, etc… These items don’t just make riding inconvenient; they also can make you invisible to drivers. It is also more difficult for cars to see you.

Please remember to be courteous and avoid bicycling on the sidewalks in the downtown Decatur pedestrian zone. The  sidewalk marking shown below designates those streets:

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