Mall Walking at Destiny USA Provides Fitness Alternative
Destiny USA offers a year-round mall walking program, Fearless Steps Forward, for those looking for an indoor route, no matter the weather. The mall walking program encompasses four floors of the mall and is three miles long. However, walkers can customize their routes to make a workout best suited for their individual needs.
Although the mall walking program is year-round, many participants take advantage of the program in the winter, as a way to maintain their fitness while avoiding winter weather. Fearless Steps Forward is also helpful in the summer, keeping walkers cool with air conditioning while they walk.
WHERE TO DO MALL WALKING
The commons level is the shortest route at 0.3 miles. The third floor is 0.6 miles, while the second floor is 1 mile and the first floor is 1.1 miles. The official brochure suggests starting at the commons level, and eventually working up to longer distances, respectively. Pictures line the floors of the mall, pointing walkers in the right direction to stay on course.
Mall Walkers can arrive as early as 6 a.m. every day, giving then time to fit in their routine before work. Mall Walkers can also choose to walk any time during the day.
The benefits of mall walking are both physical and mental. Walking regularly can lower blood pressure and can help manage Type 2 Diabetes, while also improving mood and mental health.
AVOIDING THE WEATHER
Jeannette Artini and Ingrid Mahoney usually prefer to walk outside. But when the weather is less than ideal, Artini said she enjoys walking inside Destiny USA more. The women walk 5 miles per trip, as fast as they can go.
“I think it’s really good, especially for older people,” Artini said. “A lot of times we see people that are 20 years older than us, they wouldn’t be doing this outside. It wouldn’t be safe, especially when there is ice snow, so it’s nice to see them doing it.”
Mahoney said the pair schedules their walks for Thursdays, so they visit the nearby Regional Market farmers’ market too. The pair said they buy fresh vegetables, then finish their walk, balancing exercise and healthy eating all at once.
BENEFITS OF MALLWALKING
Karlynn Vosbury, 52, just recently started mall walking at Destiny USA again after undergoing hip replacement surgery 12 weeks ago. She said walking is the best form of exercise for the recovery process.
Walking, considered a low impact workout, is known to strengthen muscle tone in the legs, abdomen and even the arms, and support joints throughout the body, according to the Arthritis Foundation.
This time around, Vosbury started on the first floor, an 11.1-mile route, and walked at her own pace. She felt tired, but also proud of herself.
Vosbury said the best time to participate in the walk is weekday afternoons, as shoppers are usually at work. “You can get out there any time of the day, it doesn’t matter what the weather is, and you’re nice, warm and safe,” Vosbury said on the benefits of mall walking. “And if you need help, there are always people around, too.” Although Vosbury has only walked the mall once, she plans to get back into a routine soon.
“I actually really enjoy it because you get to walk around the mall and see the different areas they’re building on without it being too overly crowded and being jostled and everything else,” Vosbury said.
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Article by Marissa Russo. Edit by Mengjiao Li. Photo by Marissa Russo. Head photo by Unsplash.