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Ten trips for 2011

Judging from the weekend forecast, a blanket of wet and cool will cover much of North Carolina this weekend. Not what you hope for on the first full weekend of spring. But lots of great weather is ahead, which should help soften the damp blow. And what better way to spend a rainy weekend day than planning for your next sun-drenched outing — and indulging in a vicarious escape in…

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This weekend: kite flying, paddleboarding, trail running

This weekend highlights some of the best North Carolina has to offer in the outdoors. Coast Not long ago, a biathlon/duathlon typically meant running and swimming. More and more, it can mean pretty much anything. Such as running and paddleboarding. That’s the case at Saturday’s Wrightsville Beach Biathlon, where participants will depart from the dock harbor side at the Blockade Runner, paddle four miles through Banks Channel, hop off the…

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Walk, don’t run, for two good causes

America, you may have noticed, has developed a case of the runs. Hardly a weekend goes by when you don’t run across at least one 5K benefiting a worthy cause. They raise awareness and they raise a lot of money. They also give millions of runners a reason to train. But what if you’re not a runner? What if a nice, long walk is more your pace? Are there any…

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Let’s talk backpacking and hiking

An odd thing happens when I do an appearance to promote a book: people in the audience wind up talking more than I do. This evening, at the Cary Commons Barnes & Noble, I launch another book “tour,” this one in support of my just-released “Backpacking North Carolina,” from UNC Press. The book highlights 43 backpacking trips in North Carolina, with detailed information on — well, I’ll spare you the…

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Another reason dogs are good for you

A study appearing in this month’s Journal of Physical Activity and Health of 6,000 people found that those who had dogs were 34 percent more likely to achieve the government recommended minimum weekly allotment of 150 minutes per week of moderate to vigorous exercise. (That’s five days a week of 30 minutes of exercise, or three days a week of 50 minutes of exercise, for example.) “Dogs can be a…

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Bee-ing prepared, with an EpiPen and HealthNav app

Late last September I was backpacking a particularly rugged, remote section of the Nantahala National Forest when I entered a clearing and my legs went electric. I knew immediately why: bees, lots of ‘em, all digging into my apparently tasty ankles. And I knew immediately that my trip was over and it would behoove me to skedaddle as quickly as possible. Over the years I have developed an allergic reaction…

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Spring starts Sunday. Get a head start Saturday

Run, paddle, ski in your shorts. They’re all options this weekend. Coast It may be too late to sign up (let alone train) for the 2nd Annual Quintiles Wrightsville Beach Marathon, but you’ve probably got at least a 5K in you. Just south of Wrightsville Beach, in Carolina Beach, you’ll find the 7th Annual Steve Haydu St. Patricks Lo-Tide Run benefiting one or more cancer patients and their families. (If…

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Triangle close to 50 miles of connected greenway

The Triangle’s greenway system is a tiny step closer to becoming a complete network. Joe Godfrey, parks planner with the Town of Cary, tells GGNC that a 1.3-mile missing link of the Black Creek Greenway should be finished mid-April. The stretch would extend the existing 5.6 miles of Black Creek Greenway running south from Lake Crabtree to Chapel Hill Road on to Maynard Road. A short stretch of the sidewalk/greenway…

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DST: Let the after work fun begin

Sunday, one of the kids asked how Daylight Saving Time came to be (a disgruntled kid, I should add, since she’d be waking for school an hour earlier the next morning). I spared her my discourse on a subject I’m peculiarly fascinated by and gave her the short version: Several countries adopted it in World War I as a way to save coal for the war effort. Most dropped it…

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Seven habits of people who lose weight (and keep it off)

Who better to listen to when it comes to losing weight and keeping it off than people who have lost weight and kept it off. The National Weight Control Registry was started in 1994 to identify adults who have lost weight and kept it off. Specifically, the registry’s 6,000-plus members have lost at least 30 pounds and kept if off for at least a year. Recently, they were asked how…

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