Take a Walk in the Park Day – Sandton Central Park and Mushroom Farm Park
There’s something about big city life that’s just captivating.
The hustle and bustle. The energy. The vibe. We’re fortunate to live in a place that never sleeps. A city eternally expanding, forever growing and always seeking to improve. And at the heart of this is Sandton Central – arguably the centre of all things Jozi.
As amazing as being a part of this monolith of industry and trade is, it can also be overwhelming. Have you ever been to the gym and pushed yourself so hard you burned out? If you’re not careful, it’s easy to do the same mentally or psychologically here. We live and love it, but many view our city as a concrete jungle. We say they’re jealous, but they do have a point about the pace of things…
And that’s why we’re all about Take a Walk in the Park Day.
We don’t think this one needs much explaining – the clue is in the name. What you may need help with, however, is understanding why.
As always, we’re here to tell you…
You may be asking yourself “why should I walk when there are SO many other ways to exercise?”. Thing is, those of us not born with a natural affinity to fitness know the drill. Every exercise comes with ten different excuses. We can’t run because it’s not safe. Swimming? It gets cold in winter and we need to drive home. Pilates seems weird. Yoga even weirder. As for bodybuilding, well, that just looks like too much hard work.
But who says exercise needs to be a pain in the, well, anywhere?
It might not be as Instagram-worthy, but there is a plethora of scientific evidence to substantiate the importance of walking. Wait. Let us clarify: walking, done correctly and regularly, offers a whole world of benefits. And that’s not us talking, it’s science. The best part? These benefits can be as impressive as those gained from sports or hardcore fitness regiments.
You’re probably wondering what these are. Well, here you go:
It keeps the chub away:
On average (and not including binge eaters or the recently married), a normal person can gain as much as 7kgs over a four-year period. However, those who walk an average of 30 minutes a day can expect this at least halved. This is purely from consistent exercise – and nothing high intensity at that.
It makes you feel better:
When we say walking, we don’t necessarily mean a leisurely stroll (if only life were that easy). Have you ever been late for an appointment? Or, better yet, have you ever heard your parent scream that they’re calling you for dinner “for the last time”? Walking at that pace (without the stress, mind you) can boost your mood for up to two hours. Exercising is proven to release endorphins whilst burning off excess energy. Plus, it has this magical ability to make your problems seem less important once you’re done.
It helps your memory:
Time to get scientific. A study published in Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences monitored the brain activity of its subjects. These were elderly people who walked for an average of 40 minutes, three times a week, for a full year. The results? A 2 percent average increase in the hippocampus (in simple English, the part of the brain behind memory and emotion). Now, 2 percent may not seem like much, but it’s an improvement rather than a decline.
It protects you from heart disease:
You’ve probably read it on Flora boxes, but that’s because it’s true. Any activity that increases your heart rate benefits your cardiovascular health. If you can’t walk fast, walk for longer. Studies indicate that daily runners and walkers can lower their blood pressure by at least 4.2 percent and risk of heart disease by 4.5.
So those are the numbers. Mostly, however, we’re all about walking because it feels great. As much as we love our city, life does get stressful, and too much time surrounded by buildings can become suffocating. Which is why Sandton Central has incorporated not one, but two parks for your leisure and recreation. Get out of the house and breathe in some fresh air. There are people to see, things to experience and a whole world out there waiting to be explored.
Now let’s talk about Take a Walk in the Park Day, because it’s a real thing.
It’s a worldwide initiative celebrated annually on March 30th. The event encourages participants to get out, be active and enjoy reconnecting with the outside world. We hear some of you asking where in Sandton you’re expected to walk, to which we say either Sandton Central or Mushroom Farm Park. Both of these have ample greenery, an ambient atmosphere and are designed specifically with you in mind. There are kids’ facilities, walkways and, most importantly, wide open spaces.
So, get those exercise shoes ready, grab someone you love and we hope to see you soon – you’ll thank us later.