By Tina McGill, AmeriCorps member of the Palisades Trail Crew, and Soňa Mason, West Hudson Program Coordinator
The Trail Conference is proud to present its very own GREEN GYM!
Tired of smelly, expensive indoor venues and boring workouts? Visit our spacious outdoor woodland facilities, which offer cardio warm-ups with unparalleled views and a wide range of trail-building workouts to tone all of your muscle groups.
Activities begin with a scenic hike into trail work sites to get the blood pumping. All muscle groups will then be thoroughly tested using the following tools:
• Arms: clippers and hand saws; carrying tools to work site, working the winch
• Biceps and triceps: small sledge hammers, stone shapers, drill
• Shoulders, core, and overall balance: carrying buckets of crush
• Core, back, and shoulders: rogue hoe, pick-mattock, rake; upgrade to 10 lb. sledge hammers for a real challenge and stress-release workout
• Legs: Squats when picking up medium rocks and crush buckets
• Quads and back: rogue hoe, pick-mattock; dead lifting and carrying small to medium rocks
• Sidehilling with a rogue hoe or pick-mattock (voted the best overall conditioning calorie-burn)
• Exercise your spatial intelligence by visualizing how to orient irregularly shaped rocks around obstacles and set them in the most stable positions.
Bonus effects of trail-building workouts include camaraderie, a sense of accomplishment, and improved hiking paths for everyone to enjoy.
Best of all: It’s free!
To find an upcoming trail crew outing near you, check out our calendar. All volunteers should BYO lunch, water, and work gloves. We supply the tools, dirt, rocks, and fun.