In­di­ana State Parks Con­tinue Pop­u­lar An­nual Fit­ness Chal­lenge

Modern Pioneer - - News -

In­di­ana’s an­nual Fit­ness Chal­lenge en­cour­ages vis­i­tors to walk, run, bike, pad­dle or swim at least 25 miles, or ride on horse­back 100 miles, by Nov. 30. Those who do will be en­tered into a draw­ing for prizes, in­clud­ing a 2018 An­nual En­trance Pass, Out­door In­di­ana magazine sub­scrip­tions, Depart­ment of Nat­u­ral Re­sources (DNR) camp­ing gift cards and State Park Inns gift cards.

As a bonus to cel­e­brate the 50th an­niver­sary of In­di­ana’s sys­tem of nature pre­serves this year, any­one who com­pletes 50 miles of hik­ing in­side state-ded­i­cated nature pre­serves will be en­tered in a sec­ond draw­ing for prizes. The sec­ond draw­ing also in­cludes an an­nual pass and gift cards.

More than 270 nature pre­serves have been ded­i­cated since 1967, en­com­pass­ing 50,000 acres in 70 of In­di­ana’s 92 coun­ties. They are owned and man­aged by 43 en­ti­ties, in­clud­ing the DNR, land trusts, col­leges and lo­cal park de­part­ments.

In­di­ana State Parks Di­rec­tor Dan Bort­ner said state parks of­fer hun­dreds of miles of trails that wind past lakes, climb big hills, wan­der through deep forests and canyons, and ex­plore prairies. Many lo­ca­tions also of­fer ac­ces­si­ble hard-sur­face trails.

“All of these path­ways of­fer op­por­tu­ni­ties for ex­er­cise,” Bort­ner said. “They also of­fer the added ben­e­fit of just be­ing out­doors, where it is pos­si­ble to shed the wor­ries and chal­lenges of daily life for a lit­tle while.”

Par­tic­i­pants must down­load and keep a Fit­ness Chal­lenge log that doc­u­ments their vis­its to state parks. One change this year is that par­tic­i­pants no longer need to get a sig­na­ture from a park em­ployee dur­ing each work­out. Par­tic­i­pa­tion is based on the honor sys­tem.

The log,and ad­di­tional in­for­ma­tion on the chal­lenge is at dnr.in.gov/healthy.

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