By Kelly Hosokawa
The benefits of exercising on a regular basis simply cannot be measured. By setting aside just 30 minutes every day to run, bike, walk, or participate in other physical activities, you can improve your health dramatically. There are physical benefits, but also mental and emotional benefits.
For my Girl Scout Gold Award Project, I focused on the Bay Farm Island Loop Trail, a 5.85-mile-long trail that encircles Bay Farm Island. It is just a small part of the San Francisco Bay Trail, a network of trails that totals over 500 miles and offers great views of the bay. The trail is especially useful for runners because the dirt trail reduces the constant impact to the knee joint.
With the help of my family, friends, and advisers from the City of Alameda, I designed and installed nine street markers and 24-mile markers every quarter mile along the Island Loop Trail.
The mile markers are three inches in diameter and located along the side of the bike path closest to the San Francisco Bay. With the help of bikeAlameda, I also designed and ordered a 3’ by 2’ general trail sign. The sign is located by the Veteran’s Court, by the Harbor Bay Club tennis courts and the beginning of the trail, and has brochure holders with paper maps of the trail that users can take with them.
The paper maps have a map of the Island Loop Trail and a chart for people to track their mileage and progress.
I hope that my project spreads awareness about the public resources that are available to everyone, gives people an incentive to exercise, and encourages people to lead healthier lifestyles.
A little bit of daily exercise can go a long way. It’s not too late to start.