By Amanda Daly
Have you ever listened to the song I’m in a Hurry by Alabama?
Even if you aren’t a country fan the lyrics ring true in all of our lives.
“I’m in a hurry to get things done. Oh, I rush and rush until life’s no fun…”
These days life moves fast. Perhaps your job requires lots of hours or you are busy with an active family – running around dropping kids off here and there.
With all this rushing around it is easy for life to get out of balance.
Take a minute now and think about all the special memories in your life. Chances are many of them involved recreation through sports and fitness, arts and culture, or nature and the outdoors.
There are many benefits of making recreation a priority. Recreational pursuits help you get fit and become more active. While others – and sometimes the same ones – help you spend time with family, make new friends and connect with the community.
Most people by now have heard that being involved in recreation pursuits will improve their physical and mental health. Being active can help to maintain a healthy weight, diminish the risk of a multitude of chronic diseases, boost your immune system and increase your life expectancy.
The mental health benefits include reduced depression, and stress relief.
The bottom line is regular physical activity makes you feel better, helps you carry out daily tasks easily, allows you to think more clearly and handle stress better.
You knew this already, right?
Well, did you know recreation has social benefits as well?
Recreation helps strengthen communities through reduced crime rates, volunteerism and stewardship. It promotes social bonds by uniting families, building cultural diversity, supporting individuals with disabilities and is a key piece of the support networks for our older community members.
Recreation also supports youth development by enhancing education and deterring negative behaviours.
So instead of rushing around until life’s no fun, slow down, and get involved with recreation in the community. Explore the possibilities that Nanaimo parks, recreation and culture has to offer, pick up an activity guide, a parks and trails map, visit us on line at www.nanaimo.ca or Facebook or Twitter.
If you can’t find something that suits your recreational needs, please call us 250-756-5200 or drop in to one of our facilities and we will do our best to help you out.
Amanda Daly is a marketing and communication specialist with Nanaimo parks, recreation and culture.