Get Up, Get Out, Get Moving!
07/06/2016 08:37AM ● Published by Paul Hunter
Gallery: Summertime [4 Images] Click any image to expand.
Summer is here and it is almost time for school. Right in the middle of the two and kids have already attended or are going off to camp. Family vacations abound as we look to share new experiences with our children or simply escape from the intense heat and get away from our standard activities. Or, do you prefer to “stay-cation” as we do live in one of the best beach areas in the world?
Crazy, right? People work hard 51 weeks a year to come to where we get to play year-round. As locals, we tend to take the area for granted and not take in all the fun activities we have in the area to explore and burn off some needed steam and calories. Without getting into the minute details of calories per hour, think about and minimize the time you sit in one place. Stay on your feet, move your body and lead an active life. Here On the Coast (see what I did there?) it is easy to be active.
Headed to the beach? Fantastic! Bring some shovels and dig a hole (be sure not to get trapped), make a sand castle and when done, make another one. Walk the beach to find another place to build a sand castle.
Go ahead and get in the water. Water provides much more resistance than the air, never mind the wave action challenging your balance. This alone provides a fun way to be at the beach. Hey, while you're there, follow a wave in for some home-brewed fun whilst body surfing. It is a great fun interval-based workout to repeatedly catch a wave and run back out to the break and catch another one. The resistance of the water and the fun of riding the wave in is a blast. If you are skilled and the waves are up, hop on your surfboard for a bit of the same. If you don’t know how to surf, learning is easy from one of the many surf schools along the coast such as Ride On Surfing School in Miramar Beach.
Stand up paddle boarding has been popular in our incredible area for around 12 years now and is only growing in popularity. Many places offer rentals either from the harbor or beach, and there are some services that will deliver to you. If a purchase is in your future, head over to GUSU Paddlesports for a huge selection of boards, paddles, clothing and anything you may want for a total experience.
Had enough of the beach but don’t want to stay indoors? Head to the woods for some shade and the great outdoors. Where? Any of the local state parks are great; Topsail, Grayton Beach, and Rocky Bayou are all close and filled with areas to explore. In addition to the state parks, South Walton is also home to the Long Pine Trail which affords access to hikers and bikers. Be sure to bring plenty of water, protective clothing and a map or GPS. I know we all have “smart” phones now with maps on them. They work great IF you have enough battery life at the end of the day, but there are no charging ports in the midst of the trees. Yes, even located between US98 and 30-A, you CAN get lost and need some supplies. It has been done by many unsuspecting hikers and bikers. If you’d prefer the road more easily taken due to health reasons or you need the stroller, Turkey Creek in Niceville is a fantastic place to go and even allows access to jump in the creek to cool off along the way.
The point is, don't live life inside or through your electronic screen. Get up, get outside and get moving. There is a whole world out there waiting to be seen and be explored by YOU!