It’s hot out, folks. In Las Vegas this July, 110 degrees is common. Even the shortest trip — to the mail box, for example — produces uncomfortable sweat.
So what do the walkers do? You know them. They clock five to seven miles a day every day. During the hot weather, they start out VERY early or they drive to cool Mt. Charleston to hike. At cocktail parties they brag that they have met their daily goals even in scorching heat. (Yes, we met two couples almost our age who mentioned the five and seven miles.)
But those couples are not me. Yes, my gentleman friend and I are walkers, but we don’t typically walk multiple miles and for sure, we don’t get up early to do it.
In the cool weather we typically walk in Clark County Wetlands Park. In the hot weather? We go inside to the air conditioning. And we go places that don’t charge for parking.
Our favorite place? Because we live in Southeast Las Vegas, we walk at Galleria at Sunset Mall, both floors. We say hello to other seniors; we look in at all the window sale prices and even play a handsy game with a favorite youngster at My Gym. One trip around both floors typically takes about 15 minutes. Want more exercise? Go around again and again, but don’t stop at Mrs. Field’s or Cinnabon. Leave your money and appetites at home. Mall hours at 10 a.m. to 9 p.m Monday through Saturday and 11 a.m through 6 p.m. Sunday. If earlier walking hours are available, I don’t care because I do nothing on purpose before 10 a.m.
What if the mall becomes rather boring? Then how about a casino or two. We’ve found it fun to make special trips to casinos for our walks. Across the street from the mall is Sunset Station Hotel and Casino. A walk around that casino and the connected aisles took us about 10 minutes. Green Valley Ranch Resort Spa and Casino? The casino plus The District shopping street was about 20 minutes. (We walked on a not-so-hot day.) Around the Tropicana Las Vegas casino level? 10 minutes. The Palms Casino Resort? 10 to 15 minutes. Tuscany Suites ad Casino: 10 minutes.The Venetian Resort Las Vegas (first floor) 20 minutes. M Resort & Spa Casino: 10 minutes and the Wynn Las Vegas (with most of the hallways) 30 minutes.
Why the casinos? They are air conditioned, can be huge AND maybe you may not really know where everything is…so the walk around is educational…I was frankly surprised when I walked the first floor at the Venetian to come across the rather large and crowded poker room. I didn’t even realize the Venetian had a poker room. Nor did I realize the Venetian had so many restaurants….I had been in the Venetian many times, but only to walk through on my way to conventions. The walk around was very enlightening. If I had been staying at the Venetian, a walk-around would have been a great introduction to what was where.
Large shopping venues like Sam’s Club or Home Depot would be good for walking as well….one (or two) trips around and then buy what you came for. If an employee notices your walk the second time around and asks if they can help, just smile and say you are “just looking for the whatsamacallit tool, but you’ll know it when you see it”.
And let’s not forget the value of just walking. The benefits include reducing stress, improving blood sugar, and improving heart health. You may have one of those watches that counts steps and the steps do accumulate and make you proud. You may also, by walking, wake up an otherwise not-so-perky body. (My story). Also for me, after every walk I drink a large bottle of water and I WANT that water. The rest of the day I must tell myself to drink water because it’s not a natural thing for me, but after a long walk…I gulp a bottle….no problem. (I shout a secret hooray!)
We have many more places to explore for walks…but I decided to post this article now because it’s so damn hot and maybe a reader or two needs some encouragement. We are not alone as walkers. Every day in the shopping mall we see an older gent with a walker and oxygen making the rounds. If he can do it, so can we….
Yes, we who live in Las Vegas do find ways to live with the heat. Thanks to a car for transportation and a number of big buildings welcoming us with cool air, we can walk even when the temperature soars.