It’s National School Bus Safety Week!

Be Safe: Know the Danger Zone

Buses are big! If you can’t see the driver, the driver can’t see you. Protect yourself and others by staying out of the danger zone with the following safety tips.

  1. No Touch Zone – If you can touch the bus, you’re too close
  2. Keep your Distance – Stay 10 feet away from all sides of the school bus
  3. Stay Alert – Look to the left and right before entering or exiting the bus
  4. Wait for the OK – Wait for the driver’s signal to cross and never cross behind the bus

Don’t forget to show extra appreciation for your bus drivers this week!

The Benefits of Walking!

Here at Decatur Active Living we love walking and seeing as how it’s Walktober we thought we’d share some benefits of walking from our friends over at Clarity Fitness. We got together with Abbey Griffith, owner and founder of Clarity Fitness and below are her thoughts on the wonderful benefits of walking!

Abbey Griffith
Owner, Founder, NASM CPT Clarity Fitness

As a Certified Personal Trainer, Group Exercise Instructor, Gym Owner, and Eating Disorder Recoveree, I know that there is no one “best”, “right”, or “ideal” workout. What you do to workout, how long it lasts, the intensity, where it is, and so many other factors truly come down to what will be sustainable, flexible, and fun for you! You’ll not only find it easier to incorporate movement into your life longterm, but it won’t be something you dread and feel you “have” to do. Movement will be an act of kindness and respect for your body.

Let’s talk about walking. Walking in itself is an absolute blessing, privilege, and gift. To be able to stand our entire bodies over two tiny flaps of bone and muscle (feet), then coordinate our incredible bodies over top of them while propelling ourselves forward to where we want to go? Wow! For those who can’t walk, don’t worry, your body is just as phenomenal. Think about what all goes into reading this article – the neurons firing, your eyes tracing along these words, the cognitive behavior of processing the information – can we all agree that our bodies are beyond incredible?

Now that we’ve locked in gratitude for the vessels that will take us through our entire lifetime, let’s explore how we can treat them with the respect they deserve in regards to movement. Exercise is a tool to work with, not against, the body. It is our right to play with different types of movement and explore what brings light into our lives. Be it walking, dancing, lifting, running, climbing, swimming, etc. – it is movement, and it is enough. 

I so regularly hear people beating themselves up because they “should’ve” worked out harder, longer, or in a different way. Critical and scientifically untrue comments like, “I went on a walk, but my friends ran – they did so much better than me”, or “I only walked today – I’ll have to go for a run tomorrow”. 

Both running and walking are excellent forms of exercise, but it’s time to give walking the credit it deserves. Functional movement means that a movement is found in your regular day to day motions. Think about sitting down and standing up at your desk – a squat! Or bending over to pick up a pen you dropped – a deadlift! The most functional movement of all for the many of us who get around throughout our day to day this way – walking. A study on “Walking versus running for hypotension, cholesterol, and diabetes mellitus risk reduction” states that, “Equivalent energy expenditures by moderate (walking) and vigorous (running) exercise produced similar risk reductions for hypertension, hypercholesterolemia, diabetes, and [coronary heart disease].” In essence, running is not “better” at defending against major health complications than walking, especially if you would much rather walk.

Walking is also a great option for injury prevention, as running without appropriate shoes, progression, training, stretching, and recovery can more easily lead to injury than doing so in a walk (although also risky!). If you’re interested in or love running, go for it! However whether you’re walking or running, we always recommend form checks from a Certified Personal Trainer or Physical Therapist to keep you safe and feeling your best.

Last but not least, movement and mental health must be clearly connected. If running causes you anxiety, you dread your workouts on cardio day, or you just really love walking but feel like it’s not a “good enough” workout, explore that with a Health at Every Size, Eating Disorder Informed, and/or Body Positive Mental Health Provider or Personal Trainer. It is incredibly important to tailor movement around what works for you and your body on any given day, and it’s allowed to change regularly. 

Now, go play!

Parks and Recreation Month comes to an end!

Parks and Recreation Month is coming to an end but our programming continues on. Our last scheduled program for the month was our Wednesday Walks with a Special Guest. This week we had the pleasure of Mayor Garrett joining us to tell participants about Legacy Park and the future plans for the area. Legacy Park Caretaker – Doresy Nobles – led walkers through a tour of the beautiful Moore Chapel.

A sincere thank you to Mayor Garrett, Decatur City Commissioner Kelly Walsh, City Manager Andrea Arnold, and Active Living Board Member Jack Kittle for joining us for our Wednesday Walks in July. Participants enjoyed getting to know each special guest and learn more about each of the parks visited – Glenlake Park, Oakhurst Park, Hidden Cove, and Legacy Park.

Mayor Patti Garrett joins Active Living’s Walking group for Parks & Recreation Month

As part of our Park & Recreation Month festivities, Active Living’s Walking group will visit a local park and have a special guest for each walk. This week we were pleased to have Mayor Patti Garrett join us for our weekly walk around Glenlake Park. Want to hear more about the walk? Click here to read The Champion article.

Active Living’s walking group meets weekly on Wednesday at 9:00 am. All walks will begin and end at Decatur Recreation Center (231 Sycamore Street). No registration needed, just meet us at the rec!

Busy-Eyed Day Story Walk

Take a stroll along the story walk in McKoy Park to read, Busy-Eyed Day, by Anne Marie Pace. An excerpt from the book reads,

“See the world through fresh eyes with this lush and lyrical picture book. There are so many intriguing eyes out in the world…and so many amazing things for those eyes to see! From a big-eyed bug and a stalk-eyed slug to a side-eyed frog and a wide-eyed dog, the family in this book doesn’t miss a single sight during their busy-eyed day the park. This rhyming and richly illustrated picture book is a clever and unusual celebration of being observant and keeping an eye out for magic in the everyday world that surrounds us.”

The Busy-Eyed Day Story Walk is presented in partnership with DeKalb County Library. #ourparkandrecstory

July is Parks and Recreation Month!

Join Decatur Active Living to help us celebrate Park and Recreation Month and create a new park and recreation memory! Check out the calendar below and stay tuned for additional details.

Trails & Ales – Tuesday, May 27 at 6pm

Don’t miss out on our Trails & Ales program. Sign up now by contacting Sara Holmes at sara.holmes@decaturga.com.

Trails & Ales – Tuesday, May 27 at 6pm

Trails & Ales Returns on May 27

Where Will YOU Walk in April?