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John Huckle

Lifestyle September 25, 2021

5 Mental Health Benefits of Walking

While the physical benefits of walking are well documented, a multitude of studies have shown the mental health benefits of walking are real, and potentially, immediate. So real, in fact, that many active adults are seeking out lifestyle communities that offer instant access to walking trails, such as The Preserve at Bancroft Ridge in Bancroft, Ontario.

“The Preserve is a walker’s paradise”, says John Puffer, President of the popular development. “We purposefully chose this property for its proximity to nature trails, including the legendary Hastings Heritage Trail, one of the most scenic and fascinating walks in the country”.

In addition to the more languid pace of life in active adult communities located outside busy cities, easy access to exercise – and to experience the mental health benefits of walking – are proving to be a nice value add.

The mental health benefits of walking are real – and potentially – immediate.

Anxiety Reduction

Health expert Sarah Wilson states that walking helps shut off the amygdala, the primitive part of the brain that deals with anxiety. The Anxiety and Depression Association of America states that exercise releases feel-good hormones. In fact, a single vigorous walking session can help alleviate anxiety symptoms for hours and may significantly reduce them over time with a regular routine.

Mood Boosting

Does replacing one hour of sitting with one hour of walking each day prevent depression? Yes, according to a 2019 Harvard Medical School study. Harvard professor Dr. Michael Craig Miller says that walking not only helps prevent depression, but can also act as an effective ‘treatment’ for those already experiencing it.

Thinking Clearly

Some call it “brain fog”, others just mental fatigue. Whatever the moniker, it impairs your ability to make decisions, reduces concentration and is a symptom of sleep deprivation, nutritional deficiency and other issues. Harvard researchers suggest that walking at a moderate pace for one hour, twice a week, reduces brain fog and increases the ability to problem solve.

Creative Boost

Steve Jobs, the late co-founder of Apple, was known to conduct ‘walking meetings’. Why? Big ideas seem to come while walking. During a series of experiments, Stanford University researchers found that a person generated twice as many creative responses when walking, compared to a seated person. “Walking opens up the free flow of ideas, and it is a simple and robust solution to the goals of increasing creativity and increasing physical activity.”

Grey Matters

In a recent study of 299 adults (mean age: 78 years) the Cardiovascular Health Cognition Study examined the association between various walking amounts and its effect on grey matter volume and cognitive impairment. More walking (56 blocks on average) showed greater volumes of frontal, occipital, entorhinal, and hippocampal regions and a 2-fold risk reduction for cognitive impairment.

Homes September 10, 2021

Modular Homes: 6 Top Reasons for Surge in Popularity

There was a time when modular homes were viewed as the poor cousin of “stick” built houses. That’s simply no longer the case. Today’s modern modular construction requires no compromises from buyers. Material quality. Energy efficiency. Design. It all meets or exceeds traditional stick-built counterparts. Moreover, the new modular approach offers a myriad of benefits that’s driving a surge in popularity amongst home buyers increasingly searching for a sensible option in the current economy.

What is Modular Homes Construction?

So what exactly is modular construction? It’s really just a process – a process of building off-site, under controlled plant conditions. New homes are created in “modules” that are then transported and assembled on-site. Modular homes adhere to the same – or better – materials and codes as conventionally built homes – but are completed in about half the time.

Here are the top 6 benefits driving the move to modular:

Lifestyle community developers like The Preserve at Bancroft Ridge, are riding the wave of modular homes popularity.

Strength

Structurally, modular homes are generally stronger than homes built on-site. Why? Each module is engineered to withstand transportation and placement onto foundations. Once sealed, the modules become an integrated and super strong wall, floor and roof unit.

Quality Control

Leading manufacturers currently working with unique master-planned lifestyle community developers like The Preserve at Bancroft Ridge, offer better quality management. Plus, builders like Guildcrest Homes follow stringent QA/QC programs that feature independent inspection and testing protocols. Leading modular home manufacturers have great warranties and excellent customer service.

Best Materials

Modular homes meet or exceed the codes and standards as traditional homes. What’s more, they utilize wood, concrete and steel. These are the same architect-specified materials used in conventionally built counterparts.

Eco-Friendly

Modular homes are greener. The best designs include fully equipped with energy-efficient windows, siding, and insulation. A better built home requires less energy to stay warm, cool and comfortable.

Turnaround Time

With traditional builds, site work comes first, followed by construction. With modular construction and building lot preparation happen simultaneously. This allows projects like master planned lifestyle communities to be completed in half the time.

Design

For architects, modular provides options that allow for a perfect fit with the external aesthetics of the natural environment. Plus, modular homes are becoming the natural choice for a growing group of architects. They appreciate more sustainable design and less environmental impact.

Lifestyle September 8, 2021

Walking your Way to Better Health

Walking is one of the most versatile – and most underrated – forms of exercise. There’s little doubt that taking a stroll or hike is good for you. After all, it’s an easy aerobic exercise. What may surprise you is the breath of benefits that come from adding a walk into your day.

It’s no wonder that a growing number of active adults are seeking out lifestyle communities that provide easy and instant access to walking and hiking trails. New community developers are catching on. The Preserve at Bancroft Ridge, a new master-planned lifestyle community, has purposefully located a majority of its lots right on the edge of the Hastings Heritage Trail, one of the popular routes in all of Ontario.

Here are the top benefits of regular walking

Live Longer

People who exercise regularly in their 50s and 60s are 35% less likely to pass away over the next eight years than those that lead a primarily sedentary life. For those with some underlying health conditions, the number increases to 45% less likely.

Lighten Up

Exercise releases endorphins in the body, natural painkillers. The more daily steps people take, the better their moods as a result, according to a California State University study. 

Weight Management

You can burn 200 calories over the length of a brisk 30-minute walk. Longer durations and longer distances only increases the burn. Taking a walk after a meal aids in digestion, reducing weight gain and increases the potential for dropping weight.

Tone Muscles

Walking is physical movement that increases your range of motion. Shifting the pressure and weight from joints to muscles can help tone your legs, abdomen and arms.

Sweet Snoozing

Studies show that women, ages 50 to 75, who took one-hour morning walks, were more likely to relieve insomnia than women who didn’t walk.

Joint Nourishment

Movement and compression from  walking “squishes” joint cartilage, injecting oxygen and nutrients into the area. This nourishes your joint cartilage, which without movement, gets zero blood supply.

Circulation

When walking, your rate of breath increases, circulating oxygen faster through the bloodstream. This helps to eliminate waste products, improve your energy level and the ability to heal.

Better Mental Health

As we age, walking improves memory and slows the deterioration of brain tissue. Plus, psychologists suggest that a 10-minute walk may be just as good as a 45-minute workout when it comes to relieving symptoms of anxiety and depression.