In true patriotic spirit, the Fourth of July weekend had me singing, “I’m proud to be a…Grosse Pointer.” Well that’s a bit of a fib, as technically I live in St. Clair Shores, but I did grow up in GP, and you know there’s no better place for outdoor activity than The Pointes.
I don’t want to be mistaken as a chamber of commerce member, but it’s hard not to sing the praise of this area and its outdoor activity access.
Few communities can boast they have a waterfront park, and yet all five of our Pointes do. Each park is a haven for outdoor activity. Lap swimming pools? We’ve got ’em. Acres of land for throwing a Frisbee, playing sand volleyball, tennis or shuffleboard? Check.
Let’s not forget these parks provide lake access — which affords all sorts of activities like water skiing, wakeboarding, tubing, Jet-Skiing and fishing. All of these are fun for the family and are minutes away.
If the waterfront parks aren’t your scene, there are many other options. All our elementary schools boast excellent playground equipment where the little ones can enjoy sunshine and exercise. Likewise if you’re in the community chances are there’s a soccer, baseball or softball field within walking distance. Kicking a soccer ball, hitting a baseball, or having a game of catch are all great ways to exercise and relieve stress.
Then again, if stress relief is your No. 1 priority (and you find your golf game to be on par) the Grosse Pointes have that covered too. Hit the links at one of our two beautiful golf courses in The Country Club of Detroit or the Lochmoor Club. These establishments also offer outdoor activities options in tennis courts and swimming pools, among others.
Likewise, the Pointes boast an activity that’s a rarity in most suburbs: horse riding. Tucked along Cook Road you’ll find the Grosse Pointe Hunt Club where you can satisfy the equestrian-lover in your family. Even if you aren’t a member – or don’t know how to ride – the Hunt Club is still a great destination for a walk if just to marvel at the sight of the horses.
If you’re like me and opt for simple pleasures, the sidewalks and streets have much to offer. Running, walking, biking and rollerblading are already great activities in their own right, but doing them on the streets of Grosse Pointe are even better.
First off, in the winters we have a great snow removal system, which means as warm weather approaches we have near pristine surfaces for cruising. Second, we have some of the most beautiful and historical architecture to gawk at plotted along our streets. Add to that, the refreshing shade from the area’s mature trees, and you’ve got yourself set up for a sight-seeing tour de Grosse Pointe.
If you’re headed out the door for a quick grocery run or a morning coffee, leave the car keys at home and take to the sidewalk. The shops and restaurants located in the Village and The Hill are great places trek on foot.
In my case, the icing on this cake is Lakeshore Drive. This morning’s run along the crystal clear Lake St. Clair had me so overcome that I had to stop to absorb its splendor. (My legs didn’t need the break, honest!) And this got me thinking that we are so lucky to have this view out our front door. Few places in the country offer such a picturesque landscape during outdoor activities, so why not take advantage of it?
I don’t want to sound too syrupy here, but it is true: Let the brilliance of the local environment inspire you. Allow it to seep into your activity. See how it can transform your exercise, and in turn, transform your body. The combination of exercise and nature can be therapeutic. And in Grosse Pointe, outdoor activity will make you ever thankful to be part of the community in which we live. Live well.
Mike Hackett holds a Bachelor of Science degree in exercise science and is an American Council on Exercise’s certified trainer. he is manager of Pointe Fitness and Training Center in Harper Woods and proprieter of Mike Hackett and Syphus Training LLC. he can be reached at (313) 407-6656 or e-mail Hack1913@hotmail.com. E-mail Hackett with health questions or topics for future articles.
Posted by Grosse Pointe Music Academy Staff