When was the last time you took a long walk outside?
When it comes to exercise, walking tends to get a bad rap. While studies have shown that running is better for controlling one's weight and appetite, walking equally helps to reduce the chance of hypertension, diabetes and high cholesterol and to improve heart health. Walking also doesn't put as much stress on the body as running and injuries are less likely.
Whether you want to walk for your health or for fun, I know from personal experience that the scenery can determine if a walk is a winner or a waste. After spending two weeks scoping out my favorite paths, here are the three most beautiful places to walk around Colorado Springs (that I've discovered so far)!
Anything with the word "star" in it has to blow you away, right? Well, at least this particular path does! Cheyenne Canyon, like all of these other hikes, is located in the South Western part of Colorado Springs. Besides offering the Starsmore Visitor and Nature Center, which can educate and entertain any nature-lover, the canyon also boasts a small waterfall only a few feet into the main path.
As soon as you start going further down the path, though, you're transported into a forest filled with huge trees, boulders, and waterfalls. It feel crazy to think that most of the United States probably looked like this once upon a time. The trail is also nice because it is relatively flat, unpopulated on weekdays and easy to walk. If your dog loves smelling flowers and other exciting scents (like mine does), he or she will have just as much fun you!
If you've been keeping up with my recent posts, you might remember the words "grasshoppers" and "sunflowers" associated with Stratton Open Space. While it doesn't have any waterfalls, Stratton still stuns with its roaming fields, tons of wild flowers and plenty of animals (including birds, squirrels and even deer that treat the landscape like a loaded buffet).
Stratton Open Space also offers plenty of different trails that range in difficulty and distance. Bikes are also allowed on some of the paths so be aware of cyclists as you walk! Another bonus is the lake that appears a few miles into the hike. While humans aren't allowed even the slightest "bodily contact," dogs can do their thang and enjoy the water. We aren't quite sure of the logic behind this rule, but the dogs certainly enjoy it!
More of a city girl than a hiker? Then this is the gorgeous walk for you. The Broadmoor Hotel is a stunning, historical hotel that features a lake in the center. As I've written on my Instagram, you really do feel like you're on the set of the Great Gatsby and should be wearing a gown with pearls!
The Broadmoor is obviously designed for guests of the hotel, but in the few visits I've made, it's also a very popular spot for weddings and photo shoots. If you need a new profile picture, look no further than here! It takes my sister and I about an hour to walk to the Broadmoor, around the lake and back home but this is definitely an easier walk (in terms of being on a flat sidewalk) that can be adapted to each person's fitness level.
While I've certainly gone on the most summer walks ever since moving to Colorado Springs, I'm a true walker at heart - as I've written about before. Walking doesn't just get your body moving...it can also get your mind to stop, relax and enjoy the beauty surrounding you.
And when it comes to these three spots, natural beauty is a guaranteed walking companion!
Do you prefer walking or running? What's your favorite place to walk? Comment below!