Take a Hike
By Sophia McMeekin Posted in | For Your Consideration | 9 March 2013 7:00AM
Now that the sun is not at its most blazing, it’s a great time to do some sporty experimenting with new outdoor activities, and hiking is the flavour of the month. If you feel like you’re stuck in an exercise rut, hiking is a great excuse to get off that tired suburban track you’ve worn out with over use and really shake up your exercise routine. And getting into the great outdoors isn’t just good for a change of scene; it has plenty of physical pay offs as well.
Hiking is an intense cardiovascular work out, and all that clambering over uneven terrain is a great for improving your strength, balance, and flexibility. We’ve done the hard work for you and found the perfect walking tracks for your fitness level, as well as all the vital accessories you need to look the part. Consider these your marching orders.
If you are a newbie to the whole exercise thing, take it easy on one of these tame tracks:
Rainforest Walk, Burleigh Heads| This track, through the beautiful Burleigh Heads National Park, is a great idea on a hot day. You can keep cool under the canopy while you’re walking and pop in for a swim at Echo Beach when you’re done.
Need to know: You can access the Park’s walking trails from the top of Goodwin Terrace, Burleigh Heads. This walk takes approximately 1 hour.
Noosa Headland Circuit | The great thing about this circuit is that, when you’re done, you can treat yourself to everything Noosa has to offer. Check out our Noosa Edit if you’re stuck for ideas.
Need to know: Find this track at the end of Park Road, Noosa Heads. Walking time is approximately 1.5 hours.
Simpsons Falls and Eugenia Circuit, Mt Coot–tha | If your tight schedule won’t allow for much travel time and venturing into the wild unknown sounds a tad inconvenient, you can always try something closer to home.
Need to know: Find this track off the main barbecue grounds on Sir Samuel Griffith Drive. This walk takes approximately 1.5 hours.
For a moderate workout, take your pick from these spectacular trails:
Neembeeba Lookout Track | This charming track on North Stradbroke Island is so called because it offers fantastic views of the ocean. So fantastic, in fact, that from July to November this walking track doubles as a whale-watching spot. Basically, the toned glutes are just a bonus.
Need to know: This walk takes approximately 2 hours. Find the track at the Blue Lake car park on Tazi Road.
Corymbia circuit, D’Aguilar National Park | Located in the southern section of the park, just 12 kilometres from the city centre, this trail is virtually in your backyard. It’s also quick to walk and has plenty of steep bits to get you puffing, so basically, you’ve got no excuse not to go.
Need to know: Find this circuit at Walkabout Creek, 60 Mount Nebo Road, The Gap. Walking time is approximately 45 minutes.
Mt Coolum Walk | If you think of the mountain you’re climbing as a ginormous treadmill—the greater the incline the greater your cal burn—you can see why you need to get up Mt Coolum. The 360° views at the summit aren’t bad, either.
Need to know: This walk will take approximately 3 hours. Find the track on the Corner of Tanah Street West and Jarnahill Drive, Mt Coolumn.
And if you’re feeling hard-core, we’ve got just the track for you:
Turtle Rock and Ships Stern Circuit, Binna-Burra | With a variety of terrains and some insane views, this trail in Lamington National Park is sure to get your blood pumping.
Need to know: This hike takes approximately 7 hours. Book a walking tour to explore this beautiful national park.
The good thing about hiking is it’s not in a gym. The bad thing about hiking is it’s not in a gym, so you have to deal with those pesky outdoor problems, like sunburn, mosquitos, or suddenly finding yourself scarily far from the nearest double-shot flat white. Packing the right equipment will make your life easier. Boots, hats, and backpacks are hiking essentials (and everybody knows exercise is more fun when you have the right accessories). For boots, try Globe Trekker’s Scarpa Women’s Nepal Hiking Bootor the Saloman Cosmic 4D GTX Boot for the guys. And for a day-trippin’ backpack try Anaconda’s Gogo 12 Litre Day Pack. Of course, you should never go out without water and a first aid kit (try Globe Trekker’s Bear Grylls Basic Survival Kit). And always check the weather before you leave.
Image Credit: Pinterest