Albertans are truly lucky to live in a province with countless outdoor adventure possibilities, and summer may be the best time to get out and go exploring our natural ‘playground’. The Travel Alberta website is a great place to start.
Are your boots made for hiking?
Here is a link to the top 20 hiking trails in Alberta. Did you know that cross country hiking can burn over 400 calories per hour for the average 150 lb. adult? That’s almost twice the rate of walking around your neighbourhood at a rate of 3.0 mph. Add a small backpack (less than 10 pounds) and burn 20% more calories! Hiking up elevations is even better, and we are not talking Mount Everest here, just a gradual up-hill trek. Walking up-hill, or up stairs creates more physical demand when compared to level-surface walking. The biomechanics involved in these upward movements create more muscle activation in the legs (quadriceps, hamstrings and calf muscle groups) as well as increased cardiovascular work due to the oxygen demands of those hard-working muscles.
Want to feel the breeze in your hair as you gaze out at the beautiful landscapes? Hop on a bike and check out these popular routes. Join in or get inspired by watching elite level riders in the Tour of Alberta
Whether you road bike or opt for the challenge of a back-country mountain trail, biking is an awesome active adventure. Using the same 150 lb. average, and traveling at a moderate rate of 14 mph = more than 600 calories An hour will fly by alongside the lovely scenery!
Can you canoe?
And there is nothing watered-down about self-propelled boating. Here’s some great places to canoe or kayak in Alberta.
Rowing your boat is good for your body. Grab a buddy and hop in canoe and you can burn over 300 calories per hour at a leisurely rate of 2 mph. Kayaking solo burns up to 50 more calories per hour. Even water sports enthusiasts can enjoy a healthy summer burn as water skiing shreds off almost 400 calories per hour, and swimming adds another 400+ per hour. So just add water to your recipe for healthy living!
Of course safety first for all of these adventures, make sure you have life-jackets and proper experience if you are out on the rivers and lakes, or wear good fitting-comfortable hiking shoes on the trails. Be sure to stay hydrated and generously apply that sunscreen while you explore our natural Alberta assets. Enjoy a healthy, active summer!