Getting Started

Walking is free and easy to do

shoreline park

gaviota-peakPhysical activity is an important part of good health, but not everyone can afford (or has time) to exercise in a gym. Walking is a simple solution, because it is a great way to exercise, and most people can do it. When you walk more, your health improves because you are more active, keeping you out of the doctor’s office.

Parks and trails can be thought of as outdoor gyms that are free and easy to use. Healthy People Healthy Trails can connect you to several great local trails that are perfect for beginners and all age groups. Grab a friend, explore new places, and get walking!

Before beginning, be sure to talk with your doctor about this or any new fitness program. Follow these tips for a fun, safe and healthy walk:

  • Wear tennis shoes and comfortable clothing.
  • Bring sunscreen, a hat, water bottle and snacks.
  • Notice your posture: walk with your head up (eyes forward, not down), shoulders and neck relaxed, back straight.
  • To avoid heat stress during hot months, walk during the cooler time of day and remember to drink plenty of water.
  • Before you start, check our trial maps. Be sure you are comfortable with the length and difficulty of the walk.
  • Walk with a buddy or tell someone where you are going.