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Weekend plans? Hike to learn, run for fun

Cool weather returns to North Carolina this weekend, making for good hiking at the coast and the mountains, with frightfully fun running in between. Coast Mid- to late fall, in my humble opinion the best time to explore the coast. Temperatures have dropped enough that bugs — and snakes! — are less of a problem, yet they haven’t dropped enough to seriously affect the greenery. Lots to see, fewer things…

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New River Trail: 57 miles of bike trail less than 3 hours away

The physical therapist hesitated, then issued his edict. “Maybe. If it’s a short hike. And if the trail doesn’t have a lot of rocks.” He hesitated again, “I dunno … .” “What a bike ride?” I asked. It was Marcy’s first meeting with a PT to deal with a nagging case of planter fasciitis. She’d been hobbled off and on by the annoying muscle irritation; her most recent flair-up courtesy…

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Your next race: train hot, train consistently, take a calculator

News from the lab coat world that could aid your performance: Hot workouts, cool results: You know this blazing hot, record-setting summer we just endured? The one when every workout seemed like it was taking place in an equatorial rain forest under a sunlamp? If you gutted out your summer workouts, you should be an animal in fall’s cooler weather. According to a University of Oregon study published in the…

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A greenway ride into the future

Friday’s Cross Triangle Greenway bike ride showed just how far the Triangle’s greenway system has come — and how far it has to go. The ride was the first of what promises to be an annual event. The ride — a 39-mile excursion from the N.C. Museum of Art in Raleigh to the entertainment Mecca of downtown Durham (American Tobacco Complex, Durham Bulls Athletic Park, Durham Performing Arts Center, the…

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Fall hikes without the fall crowds

OK, with fall peaking around us, you aren’t the only one thinking about taking a hike. People who in their entire lives have never thought about taking a hike are likely looking at the forecast — sunny and cool — and thinking, “Hmm, I should think about taking a hike.” And that means the usual suspects — the Blue Ridge Parkway, the Great Smoky Mountains, Shining Rock — will be…

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Cross the Triangle: A greenway adventure

Wanna do something more fun than work tomorrow? Wanna do something … epic? Like ride your bike from Raleigh to Durham, mostly on greenways? Friday at noon, 40 bikers/greenway enthusiasts will set forth from the N.C. Museum of Art on a 39-mile bike ride that will wind up five hours later in downtown Durham, at the American Tobacco Complex/Durham Bulls Athletic Park. It’s part of an effort to boost support…

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Another reason to walk, another to downplay BMI

Another reason you should go for a walk today: Putting in six to nine miles a week may help you remember that you left your keys in the freezer. This from a University of Pittsburgh study published in the journal Neurology that followed 300 seniors whose average age was 78 at the beginning of the study in 1989. Over time — about 13 years — one-third had developed “mild cognitive…

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Five minutes exploring Conrad Anker

I walked into the Great Outdoor Provision Store in Cameron Village a half hour ago and immediately saw who I was looking for. GOPC’s Chuck Millsaps was talking to a guy at the counter; I walked over and waited. Chuck had invited me down to meet Conrad Anker, one of the world’s top alpinists, who was in Raleigh for a speaking gig. As I waited, I scanned the store to…

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Support your local bike shop: A tale from the trail

Hello, and welcome to GGNC Playhouse. Today’s a one-act performance, “Buy Local: Your Race Could Depend On It,” is a re-creation of an actual event that occurred at Saturday’s 6 BC endurance mountain bike race at Briar Chapel south of Chapel Hill. The scene opens with a long shot of several mountain bikers coming up to pit row. The riders, nearing the end of a 7-mile lap, are slowly pedaling…

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Art Loeb, Part II: One wet and wild run

Tuesday, we started running the 31-mile Art Loeb Trail in the Pisgah National Forest with Mike Walsh, Charles West and Mike Day. Today, we finish the run. Charles West and Mike Walsh were a good half hour into telling me about their 11 hour and 10 minute, 31-mile run on the rugged Art Loeb Trail before they mentioned the rain. They were 10 miles into their trail tale, coming into…

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