With the days so short and the weather so changeable, it’s more important than ever to get outside as much as possible. You really might not feel like it, but a walk in the fresh air will boost serotonin levels, improve mood and burn calories – especially if it’s very cold! Read on for our tips on how to have a great walk.
1. Gear up! You may have heard it say that ‘there’s no bad weather, only bad clothing’. It’s true that if you’re warm and dry you’ll have a good experience, while being cold, wet and miserable is never any fun! Even if you don’t think it’s going to rain, take a decent waterproof coat with you, as well as a hat, gloves and neck warmer or scarf. Decent walking boots or wellies with good tread and thick walking socks are a must, as well.
2. Pick your level. If you don’t walk regularly, it’s easy to over-estimate your fitness levels. If you’re walking with young children, you just know they’ll lose interest when you’re still three miles from home! Around the Swettenham Arms, we’re lucky enough to have lots of walking on our doorstep. You can walk from the pub to Brereton Heath Country Park and back, a loop of around 1h 20min on mostly flat, dry paths. There’s lots of areas to let your dog off the lead, as well. If you’re feeling more ambitious, you can turn off onto the Dane Valley Way, a route of around 40 miles, and walk as far as you want alongside the river. For those who want to stay closer to home, take a stroll in the 28 acre Quinta Lovell Arboretum immediately behind the pub.
3. Be prepared. Those little things can make all the difference when it comes to an enjoyable experience vs one that’s memorable for all the wrong reasons. Carry plenty of tissues, and a couple of plasters for blisters, as well as a fully charged mobile phone. If you’re walking with Rover, put some dog biscuits and some poop bags in your pocket as well as some boiled sweets for human consumption!
4. Make it worthwhile. Make the walk into an occasion by treating yourself to a well-earned mug of hot chocolate or a warming bowl of soup at the Swettenham Arms. We’re open from 11.30am onwards, providing home-cooked food for weary walkers, and we welcome dogs and boots in our stone-flagged bar area.