There is no excuse not to get out in the bright evenings and explore Portlaoise, thanks to a local couple who have set up a new walking club.
Alex and Myriam Bergin from Cherrygrove formed ‘Fast Forward’ five weeks ago, not just to get fit, but to make new friends and get to know the town’s walking routes.
“We learned how to walk properly in Portlaoise Leisure Centre, exercising first, swinging the arms, breathing deeply and looking ahead. A lot of people wanted to walk, so we registered with Get Ireland Walking and started walking together,” said Alex.
The group meet on Monday mornings and Thursday evenings at 7pm at the Leisure Centre, taking different 3k walks about the town.
“People can go at their own pace. If they want we can go up to 5k. We stay in well-lit areas. We go to places like the People’s Park and back by the Downs. A lot of people say they were never in there,” said Alex.
There is a great social aspect to the club, and Alex and Myriam, who is originally from Brazil, are encouraging the town’s multi cultural community to come along.
“We are having a great time walking and talking. No matter where you are from, you are all welcome, to make new friends. There is no charge, the only rule is to wear a high vis jacket, and check you have no heart problems first,” he said.
Dogs and buggies are also welcome.
“Dogs are welcome once owners pick up their dirt. We have a huge problem encountering dog litter on the walks, especially on the Borris Road,” said Alex. Call 086 128 5353 for more information.