July is National Parks & Recreation Month, and our staff at Jefferson Center feel very grateful to live in Colorado, a state that offers some of the most beautiful terrain to responsibly explore! We have discussed the “Five Dimensions of Wellness” in several of our blog articles and webinars. One of these dimensions is Physical Wellness, which involves making choices to fulfill our bodies in meaningful ways that aligns with our physical health. Physical activity should be enjoyable, and caring for your body while traversing Colorado’s beautiful parks is one of the best ways to engage in wellness.
Read below to find some ideas on how to make the most of Colorado’s parks to improve your Physical Wellness!
1) Hit up the Rocky Mountain National Park. How lucky are we to have one of the most famous national parks in our own backyard? The Rocky Mountain National Park is roughly an hour and a half drive from Denver and contains picturesque mountain environments. From lakes to peaks to meadows to wildlife viewing, the Rockies offer something for everyone’s interests. Visit the Rocky Mountain National Park website to learn more about how to visit the park. Jefferson Center Public Library also offers a State Parks Pass that you can check out or place on hold!
2) Hike the trails near Denver. Want to stay closer to home? Denver has many walking/hiking trails just a short drive, bike, or even walk away from you. Check out our blog on five hikes for mindfulness around Denver, or check out this link for other hiking trails less than 30 minutes from Denver: Hikes Just 30 Minutes from Denver, Colorado (dayhikesneardenver.com). Even if you’d prefer to not hike and just want to spend time in nature, you can easily bring a picnic and enjoy a meal at one of these scenic spaces, or gather some friends and family for quality conversation.
3) Visit all of Denver’s gorgeous parks in one summer. Some of the most ambitious climbers in Colorado have a goal of climbing all 58 14ers (mountain peaks reaching over 14,000 feet) in the state. This is a great goal, but for those who may want a bit more leisure in their outdoor exploration, why not try visiting all of Denver’s parks? Below we have included a list of the seven most popular parks in the Greater Denver Region. As an added challenge, round up your family and/or friends and embark on these excursions before the end of summer!
- Berkeley Lake Park
- Cheesman Park
- Confluence Park
- City Park
- Civic Center Park
- Sloan’s Lake Park
- Washington Park
4) Visit the City of Denver’s Parks & Recreation website. Stay up to date on the 30 recreation centers, over 20,000 acres of urban and mountain parkland, and other parks news. The Denver Parks & Rec department offers seasonal activity guides and hosts an Active Older Adult (AOA) program for community members over 50 to participate in wellness activities. Parks & Recreation – City and County of Denver (denvergov.org)
Spending time outdoors has been proven to reduce stress, ease depression, boost our immune system, lower blood pressure, and improve sleep quality. We’re about halfway through summer, so make sure you give yourself time to get outside, enjoy the warm weather, and care for your overall wellbeing through Physical Wellness.