With spring just around the corner and the weather starting to warm up, it is the perfect time to reassess your goals and resolutions for 2017. Springtime is all about new beginnings, as the days become longer and everything starts to bloom. This makes March the ideal time to take your goals outside, get some fresh air and look forward to the rest of the year.
An easy way to do this is by taking advantage of the beautiful trail and hiking systems in Michigan. With over 2,700 miles of rail-trails there are so many opportunities to get active outdoors. There are more trails than possible for me to talk about all of them, but I will share a few of my favorites in the Metro Detroit area, with the hope that they will inspire you to get active and hike, bike or run!
Proud Lake Recreation Area (Commerce, MI)
- 20 total miles of trails, two trails running parallel to the HuronRiver.
- With the area ranging from dense forests and vast wetlands to a chain of lakes, Proud Lake is the perfect place to get the up north feel without having to travel very far. Spring is a great time to visit the trails, as wildflowers start to bloom in the wetlands. The park is a popular spot for many hikers, bikers, paddlers and campers. There are nice areas near the Huron River to set up for a picnic lunch if you plan ahead!
Belle Isle (Detroit, MI)
- The exterior road around the island is about 6 miles.
- There are so many ways to get active at Belle Isle! The exterior path around the island is 6 miles and is ideal for bikers and runners. For a longer workout, you can continue on to the Detroit RiverWalk from the MacArthur Bridge. There are also basketball and tennis courts, baseball fields and playgrounds, making it perfect for an active family adventure!
Stony Creek Metropark (Shelby Township, MI)
- More than 27 miles of hiking trails
- 6.1 mile paved trail for biking and various mountain biking trails
- Stony Creek has a Fitness Trail near Eastwood Beach, with varied lengths from ¾ of a mile to 1 ¾ mile with exercise stations. If you are looking a longer workout, there is a 6.2 paved path around the scenic Stony Creek Lake. There are also many mountain biking trail ranging from easy to most difficult and 3 to 6 miles in length.
Paint Creek Trail and the Clinton River Trail (Rochester, MI)
- Paint Creek is 8.9 miles
- Clinton River Trail is 16 miles
- Both of these trails extend through many cities and townships and meet in Rochester, with many access points and multiple spots to park your car. On a sunny spring day, these trails are extremely popular spots for both walkers and bikers. These trails follow the paths of old rail lines and waterways, and offer beautiful views of the Clinton River.
There are so many trails in Michigan to take advantage of! Take time this spring to reassess your goals for the year, focus on what you can take advantage of now and how you can make simple, positive changes that become long-lasting healthy habits.
Written by Rebecca Snay, 2017 Fitness Ambassador