Blue Ridge Country September/October 2020 - 30

in memory as well as navigation. Slippery rocks, uneven terrain, overhanging
branches, and wildlife skittering across
your path-all of the things you might
encounter on a trail-require hundreds
of micro and macro adjustments to your
gait, foot pressure and body positioning.
Without your conscious awareness of the
process, these adjustments are stimulating the neural circuitry of your brain, particularly the seat of memory storage and
retrieval in the hippocampus. This is why
so many studies show that physical activity enhances memory.
California neurologist Scott Grafton is
a big believer in the healing power of the
outdoor exercise.
"Take old people out of a complex
environment and they age quicker," he
says. "The brain doesn't just need physical activity to remain vital, but complex
physical activity-the brain needs this to
stay healthy and engaged." Something as
simple as walking in a new environment
provides this critical brain input.
According to Aaron Sussman, co-au-

BEGINNER TIPS

1. Know the lay of the land, which calls for buying
a map and carrying a compass.
2. Hiking boots give good support on rocky terrain, but break them in first to avoid blisters.
3. Water, snacks, sunscreen, bug spray, cell phone,
and a basic first aid kit are good to carry.
4. For every hour of hiking, drink at least a pint of
water; do it before you get thirsty. 	
-SC-W

Breaks Interstate Park, with
views of the "Grand Canyon
of the South," offers trails for
all levels of fitness.

thor of "The Magic of Walking," walking
in nature is the "fountain of youth that
is no legend." He also declares it the "exercise that needs no gym, the tranquilizer
without a pill, the therapy without a psychoanalyst." Hiking has been documented to lower the likelihoodBEST
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Blue Ridge Country September/October 2020

Table of Contents for the Digital Edition of Blue Ridge Country September/October 2020

Blue Ridge Country September/October 2020 - Cover1
Blue Ridge Country September/October 2020 - Cover2
Blue Ridge Country September/October 2020 - 3
Blue Ridge Country September/October 2020 - 4
Blue Ridge Country September/October 2020 - 5
Blue Ridge Country September/October 2020 - 6
Blue Ridge Country September/October 2020 - 7
Blue Ridge Country September/October 2020 - 8
Blue Ridge Country September/October 2020 - 9
Blue Ridge Country September/October 2020 - 10
Blue Ridge Country September/October 2020 - 11
Blue Ridge Country September/October 2020 - 12
Blue Ridge Country September/October 2020 - 13
Blue Ridge Country September/October 2020 - 14
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Blue Ridge Country September/October 2020 - 17
Blue Ridge Country September/October 2020 - 18
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Blue Ridge Country September/October 2020 - 25
Blue Ridge Country September/October 2020 - 26
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Blue Ridge Country September/October 2020 - 30
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Blue Ridge Country September/October 2020 - Cover3
Blue Ridge Country September/October 2020 - Cover4
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