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May: National Bike Month

May 1, 2017

One of the best parts about summer and warm weather is simply being able to enjoy fresh air and the outdoors. With that also means it is finally time that we can turn to local trails and paths for exercise instead of average gym workouts! Since May is already here and it is National Bike Month, let’s talk a little bit more about why biking is a great choice of exercise not only this month, but lifelong.

Milwaukee is fortunate to have miles upon miles of bike trails and parks. There are also bike shops close to Elements in Whitefish Bay that make biking a community-friendly hobby, sport, and activity. Biking provides many benefits to the body, besides just toning up leg muscles. Some biking benefits include:

  • Increases cardiovascular fitness, muscle strength, and flexibility.

  • Improves joint mobility.

  • Decreases stress and body fat levels

  • Improves posture and coordination

  • Prevents or manages disease

  • Saves the environment compared to car usage

Some of the best biking trails in Milwaukee include….

  • The Oak Leaf Trail, which is over 100 miles of scenic paths through Milwaukee County, designed for bikers, runners, and walkers. The trail includes wooded sections of the Milwaukee River, and a lengthy section of the East Side trail even follows an abandoned railroad corridor along the river.

  • The Beerline Trail that runs north to south along the western side of the Milwaukee River. The trail is named 'Beerline' because of its location near where many of the old Milwaukee breweries were located. The trail begins just north of Downtown Milwaukee and goes north through Gordon Park and continues through the Riverwest neighborhood following the path of an old railroad line. Currently the trail extends just north of Capitol Drive to the border between the City of Milwaukee and Glendale.

  • Hank Aaron State Trail, which stretches from the Milwaukee lakefront to Miller Park and beyond. This trail mixes urban settings and natural scenes by running west from Lake Shore State Park through the Historic Third Ward, along Canal Street in the Menomonee River Valley, and then off-street along the river and on dedicated trails for more than 6 miles.

  • The recently completed Kinnickinnic River Trail (KKRT), which is 2 ½ miles of off-street paved trails and on-street bike lanes.

In addition to bike trails, the City of Milwaukee has over 85 miles of bike lanes, including buffered lanes, green bike lanes and shared lane markings. In fact, Wisconsin is home to the Wisconsin Bike Fed: the country's largest, statewide bicycle organization.

There are many trails, paths, local parks, and bike lanes to cycle on this month. Save the environment, boost your heart rate, and get riding! Happy May and happy National Bike Month!

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