Outdoor Therapy - Hiking is Cooler than you think

Added 12/19/13:
For those interested, Charlie will be leading an extended hike of about 7-8 miles.  We will all start from the same place and hike together for the first 3-4 miles.

Location: Kensington Metropark Nature Center - Don't use Meetup maps, instead use this one to Meet us in the Kensington Nature Center - Kensington Nature Center

Your brain is no different than rest of the muscles in your body--you either use it or you lose it.

As a Mental Health Therapist and a Lifelong Outdoor Enthusiast, I know by experience and education how important outdoor exercise is. This hike is cross posted with my hiking group.

Studies have shown that hiking in the Great Outdoors is not only good for the body but also Great for the Brain. A few factoids:

1. Fresh Air and Natural Vitamin D from the sun (even overcast sun) increases lung capacity and melatonin which makes the Brain happier, even on grey days!

2. Decreases Stress, Depression, Anxiety, confusion, Seasonal Affective Disorder and let's just say it.... The winter blahs due to increases of Norepinephrine

3. Boosts Brain function by increasing brain plasticity and stimulates Seratonin, Endorphins, Glutamate, Dopamine and other areas that create happiness or pleasure.

4. Improves memory and learning by increasing important chemicals that help prevent degeneration of the Hippocampus.

5. Socializing with fellow hikers increases enjoyment level which helps the brain crave exercise more instead of dreading it.

6. Outdoor physical activity has a 50% greater positive effect on mental health than going to the gym.

Details and Itinerary:

Hike: Approximately 3-4 miles. Terrain is moderate

Cost: Free if you have a Metroparks Pass, $5 if you don't.

Wear good hiking boots or tennis shoes with good traction. Dress warm!

1:00 noon - 1:30 - Meet n' Greet in the Kensington Nature Center. Get to know your fellow hikers in a relaxed and interesting setting. Live critters to visit, learn about Kensington Nature Area.

1:30 - Hit the trails with your fellow hikers

Hike for approximately 1.5 hours

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  • 7th Dave of S.

    Neither snow, nor rain, nor slush could keep us from our appointed hike.

    December 23, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    There were 20 for Charity's walk of 1h 5m and 9 continued on for Charlie's walk of 1h 10m. There was some degree of rain the whole time. I admire this group for not being deterred by rain etc. Many groups are completely helpless when it comes to rain. Thankfully there was no ice but only slushy snow to contend with. We estimated 6 miles of total hiking.

    December 22, 2013

  • Sondra

    Lots of fun! Nice group of people and great workout!

    December 21, 2013

  • Lee K

    I know this is last minute, but if you want to carpool, I live in Warren/Royal Oak area call me at[masked]-1460. - Lee

    December 21, 2013

  • Jennifer

    I'm going to bow out for this one, my neck has been strained for a week or so and not getting better. Always the next hike!

    December 21, 2013

  • 7th Dave of S.

    Hiking is cooler than a penguin's feet!

    1 · December 20, 2013

  • Andrea

    I'm bowing out - the forecast is for drizzling rain starting at noon tomorrow. The footing might be pretty precarious after tonight's freeze. I'm a fair weather hiker; sorry!

    December 20, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    Ready to Bring it! :-)

    December 20, 2013

  • Dan H.

    I have to cancel for this weekend. I will be headed out of state tomorrow morning.

    December 20, 2013

  • Wendy P.

    If this event is full, do I have to wait until someone changes their rsvp or can I just show up?

    December 17, 2013

    • Charlie

      The hike has opened up to everyone... so come along.

      1 · December 19, 2013

    • Wendy P.

      I'm going to have to pass. A friend of mine just passed away unexpectedly. :( But please, schedule more long hikes. Those are great!

      December 19, 2013

  • Charlie

    I am leading an extended hike of about 7-8 miles. We are meeting at the same place and hiking together for the first 3-4 miles.

    December 19, 2013

  • David

    Will have to catch up with you another time. I am heading out of town.

    December 18, 2013

  • A former member
    A former member

    The day pass is $5 and goes up to $7 in 2014. An annual is $30 ($20 if 62 or older) and is valid through 2014.

    December 11, 2013

    • Charity M.

      Thank you for the information. I made the changes accordingly in the description of the event.

      December 13, 2013

  • Lynn K

    Sounds awesome! I would love to join but have family Christmas dinner at 3... Next time!

    December 11, 2013

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