Lake Elsinore residents have a new weapon in their battle against the bulge.
The Lake Elsinore Fitness Trail, a first for the city, features one-fifth of a mile of stations designed to help users get fit as part of the city’s Healthy LE initiative. It is conveniently located in Serenity Park making it easy for parents to hit the trail while children take advantage of the skate and BMX parks adjacent to it.
Serenity Park is located at 19685 Palomar Street in Lake Elsinore, making it easy for residents of Wildomar and Canyon Lake to use the trail as well.
“I’m really proud to welcome you here to the opening of our fitness trail,” Jonathan Skinner, director of community services, said during the Oct. 17 ribbon-cutting ceremony. “Looking at the linear parks, we don’t really have this kind of activity. We are going to be a mainstay for other places.”
Several dozen residents, dignitaries and city officials gathered at the park for the ribbon-cutting ceremony.
Lake Elsinore Mayor Bob Magee said the council “jumped on the property” and turned “nothing into something.”
“Not many of you realize that we are standing on an earthquake fault,” Magee said. “There is a reason there was nothing built here, why no one could ever more forward with anything, because it is an earthquake fault.
“So, if you feel the earth shake, it could just be me running or it could be an earthquake,” he quipped.
Magee said the park, which was built at a cost of $10,000, was the idea of Councilman Brian Tisdale, who started the Healthy LE campaign.
Tisdale said as a Marine, he understands the importance of physical fitness.
“For me, it’s all about the pushups,” Tisdale joked. “As a Marine, I looked at the slope on this trail, and I thought, ‘I know what to do with this.’ We came up with the idea of a fitness trail.”
Tisdale gave all the credit for the new trail to the city’s public works team.
“They laid it out, they carved it out and they played with the stations and modified them,” he said. “We have a great city staff, and we couldn’t do it without them.”
There are 12 stations on the fitness trail, including a calf stretch, hamstring and quadriceps stretch, bent knee hang, situps, reverse pullups and many others. The trail also features fitness facts, heartbeat checks and a stair climbing station.
The fitness trail is free and open to the public, but residents should bring a water bottle and be ready to break a sweat, as the park features sloping hills and some difficult challenges, all which can be easily modified for those who want a workout but are unable to do some of the tougher stations.
“Whether you are a beginner just starting to get fit or a seasoned exerciser ready to push yourself to the next level, Serenity Park Fitness Trail has your challenge here,” a press release from the city said.
The city plans to add additional fitness elements and trails to other local parks in the future as part of its Healthy LE Program because a “healthy society is better for everyone,” according to Tisdale.
“I really want residents of our city to be healthy,” he said. “We are going to keep dreaming extreme, because that’s what we do here.”