Your own piece of paradise is right under your feet

Summer in Michigan is the perfect time to remember our state motto,  “If you seek a pleasant peninsula, look about you.”  I’m sure many of you can recall a time when our license plates read Water Wonderland  – indeed our great state of Michigan is known for its beaches.    Many people are surprised when they view the lake for the first time.  In fact, a woman stopped me when I was walking the shoreline this past Sunday and remarked, “This is a lake but it looks like a small ocean!  You are so lucky to live here; it’s like a piece of paradise!”  I agreed with her because I feel the same way … it truly is a piece of paradise here along the lake!

The woman continued to explain that she was from Ohio and that she and her husband wanted a vacation spot where they could simply relax for a week or so.   According to her, they couldn’t have picked a better location and both were excited to take a long walk along the shoreline.   I understood exactly and explained that our family loves walking along the shores of Lake Michigan.  It’s the perfect place to relax and after all, we deserve relaxation time on a daily basis.  For that matter, so do you!

I want to stress this point because already know what you’re thinking, it’s too difficult to find time to relax.  I’ll give you that and agree that it isn’t easy.  You work all day long, your commute time can be crazy long, you have numerous chores to accomplish once you walk through the door late in the day and then there is dinner to think of.   Just the thought of having to prepare a meal is exhausting.  You have to do some laundry, dishes, the trash has to be taken out, bills to pay… well, you don’t need to be reminded of the list, you live it every day!  It is almost too much sometimes, and the thought of trying to enjoy a period of relaxation probably causes you to simply laugh at the idea.   But if you try it can be done, especially if you keep in mind that you deserve it – your good health deserves it.

It’s good for the soul to get outdoors and enjoy a piece of local paradise!  It should be pretty easy to locate a nearby lake. There are 1,238 public beaches in Michigan and 485 private beaches.  I surely hope you have the ability to visit one or more since beaches provide the perfect spot to relax and a great opportunity to walk as well!

You know I just had to mention walking along the beach, especially since I know it provides many benefits!   Not only does walking along the beach help diminish stress and create a high level of tranquility, but walking on a beach also helps you burn calories.  You will use 20 to 50 percent more calories than you would walking at the same pace on a hard surface, pretty awesome stuff I’d say!

It’s true that you may have other things that you feel are more important and that must be taken care of, but many of those things can wait.  Summer won’t wait.  It will be gone before we know it and you’ll wish you would have enjoyed it more once you see the cold, white stuff outdoors.  It won’t be as pleasant of a paradise when that arrives but we’ll discuss that another day.

Life passes by quickly, it’s time that can’t be brought back.  We all need to take time for ourselves to relax and enjoy this great state right under our feet.  Enjoy the lakes and shorelines within it, our own pieces of paradise right here!

Make plans today to do some shoreline relaxing soon … you deserve it, seriously.

Photo credit Jodi Davis

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