Wednesday, December 23, 2020

Essay: Great Outdoors - A Motivational Prescription To Enjoy A Healthy Lifestyle

This essay first appeared in the Nov./Dec. Newsletter of the South Mountain Partnership

As a 20 year resident of Franklin County, a high school graduate from a small northwest Pennsylvania town, and former small college athlete in central Pennsylvania, and now a 'semi-retired' Health & Physical Education teacher, I have a "perspective" to share about walking, jogging, and hiking the great outdoor paths and trails of south central Pennsylvania. 
Given the many trail locations and access points to any number of 'park and walk' sites, I boldly recommend our residents and guests, of all ages, get their daily walks for any and all of the following reasons:

-- View God's natural wonder and handiwork in living color in all seasons.

-- Safely enjoy the #1 doctor's recommended good health practice.

-- Take a stand to combat the COVID-19 threat to your health.

-- Share some social time with healthy, like-minded friends and family.

-- Be a role model for our neighborhoods and communities - share the path.

Sometimes the biggest stumbling block we face when engaging in healthy physical activity is complacency. 

We've developed daily schedules and routines into habitual practice, day in and day out. 

Research points out that half the time we simply function on auto-pilot without so much as giving a thought to doing something different. 

So to insert something different into your daily routine you must overcome that complacency. 

When you conquer complacent thinking with any new behavior you stimulate dormant energy levels and find sometimes it's easier to act your way into a new way of thinking than think your way into a new way of acting. 

Just grab a friend, or pet, and go. 

More people are successfully engaging healthy lifestyles by claiming 'the great outdoors' as theirs, and combining good intentions with deliberate actions. 

Will you get outdoors today?!

[Visit the South Mountain Partnership website to learn more about its programs, initiatives, upcoming events and how you can get involved.]

Jake Jacobs is an adjunct professor at Penn State Mont Alto Campus and McDaniel College in Westminster, MD.

Note: Do you have a story or essay you would like to share with everyone in the South Mountain Partnership? The Partnership is active in Adams, Cumberland, Franklin, and York counties. If so, please send a brief summary of your idea to Katie Hess by sending email to:


Allegheny Front: In A Noisy World, Our Brains Still Need The Sounds Of Nature

Related Articles: 

-- South Mountain Partnership Power Of The Partnership Celebration Jan. 29 

-- New Friends Of South Mountain Partnership Launched To Support South Mountain Landscape Initiative

[Posted: December 23, 2020]  PA Environment Digest

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