Walking is a great activity to help you meet your health and fitness goals. It is a wonderful way to see new places and meet fun people.
While this is mainly a walking group, we occasionally post other fitness activities such as hiking, biking or kayaking. Most of our events are on the eastside, including (but not limited to) Bellevue, Kirkland, Redmond, Woodinville, Sammamish, Issaquah and Mercer Island. Every once in a while we will post an event in Seattle or elsewhere. We like routes that are off the main roads (i.e. Burke Gilman trail) but we also do some urban walks, especially if there is a festival or celebration going on. Some of our routes are sanctioned Volkssport walks, but most are not. Some of us will bring our canine friends from time to time.
This group usually walks at a fairly brisk fitness pace of about 3.5 miles per hour. Our usual distance is about 6-7 miles or 10K, which takes about two hours. When the walks are short (an hour or less), we do not usually stop for breaks, so please take care of your needs (i.e. restroom, phone calls) before the walk and if people want to get together afterwards for food/drink, that can be arranged! Please read the event descriptions carefully and make sure the distance and difficulty rating is a good fit for you. The difficulty rating goes from 1 (flat) to 5 (extremely steep) and most of our events are rated 1-3. If you want to walk slower than the group, make sure you know the route and try to find a similar-paced walking partner. We don't want to leave anyone behind.
We walk year-round, regardless of the weather. Events will only be cancelled in extreme circumstances. It's best to dress in layers and be prepared for any changes in conditions. Some of us like to wear a small backpack to keep a water bottle and extra layers handy -- raincoat, umbrella, gloves, hats, sunglasses, etc. Make sure your shoes are comfortable!
Many people associate "5K" and "10K" with a fundraising or racing event. In this group, it simply refers to the distance of the walk. We are not a competitive or "learn to run" group. All events are free (no fundraising required) unless otherwise noted. We will try to let everyone know the approximate distance and level of difficulty (i.e. flat, hills, steep, etc.) when we post the events. Some of our walks may be sanctioned "Volkssport" walks, which anyone can join for free, but if you do have Volkssport books that you want to stamp then it usually costs about $3 per walk. Again, we will let you know if we are doing a Volkswalk so that those of you participating can bring your books and money.
Please click on the "Pages" tab for more details about this group. Also check out the Message Board under the Discussions tab. Feel free to make suggestions if you have any ideas for this group :-)
I look forward to seeing you out on the trails. We live in a spectacular place for experiencing the outdoors with our mild climate and tremendous natural beauty. Let's go out and enjoy it!