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Like to hike? Join Kane, ‘Get On Trails’

Missy Kane is all about getting people motivated to exercise. So, let’s head to the mountains.

Kane, health promotions coordinator at Covenant Health who participated in the 1,500-meter run at the 1984 Los Angeles Olympics, uses her master’s degree in exercise physiology and puts a little spice into her various exercise classes in West Knoxville. Soon it’ll be time to climb the Smokies.

“A lot of people in my hiking program started out as walkers,” Kane said about her next program, “Get on Trails,” a month-long series of Smoky Mountain hikes of various lengths held bi-annually each Wednesday throughout April and again in October.

“Get on Trails,” started six years ago.

“We go on fun hikes … it kinda opens people up to hiking in the Smokies,” Kane said. “And then when they come, some of ’em are out of breath, but then they’ll say, ‘my gosh, this is fun,’ I’ve got to stay in shape because I’ve got to hike.”

Kane added, “we have a lot of people from Farragut that come.”

The class is a “fifty-fifty” combination of experienced hikers and novices, Kane said, averaging between 45 and 55 participants on each hike. She said the participation age range has been from 25 to 81.

Participants have an option to sign up for one or all four Wednesday hikes, running in length from 4.9 miles the first week in April to 7 miles in week two, 9 in week three and a choice on the final Wednesday between a “regular hike” of 5 miles “or if you like a challenge, we’re going fifteen,” Kane said.

Hiking areas range from Greenbrier to Cades Cove. “I’ve repeated three to five hikes, but I try to come up with a couple of new hikes each year,” Kane said.

Kane said the April class is about “three-quarters full” and encourages those interested to act fast. Cost is $50 for all four hikes, or $15 per hike.

Saying she likes “new goals,” Kane was driving in the mountains one day, “and I said, ‘why don’t we do a get on trails and raise money for Friends of the Smokies, I’m good friends with that organization?’” she said. “I thought, ‘you know, why don’t we do hiking ’cause it’s so much better on your body.’ And so, we started six years ago and we have forty to sixty people … .”

For more information on the “Get on Trails” program, call Covenant Heath at 865-541-4500.


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