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Today I didn’t have to wear the neoprene compression sleeve on my knee. The issue was less of pain in the joint and more of tightness in the quadriceps. I was able to ride about four miles today, but part of the limitation was that I engaged in my upper body workout at Barnes Regional Park. Our first image is looking back up Key Boulevard to indicate what a quiet old neighborhood this is where I live. The second image indicates that we still have a few pockets of nice, undeveloped wild land, as well.
Over the past decade, Midwest City government has really developed Barnes Park a great deal. It’s busy at mid-morning when the weather is warm. The whole park trail system hugs Soldier Creek. I remind my regular readers that this area was heavily occupied by native tribes before the European settlers came. It’s always been an open park since then.
This raised area on the right holds a series of soccer fields (“pitches” outside the US). I used to run sprints up that sharp embankment, but it will be a good long while before I do any of that again. There’s even a dedicated dog area, separated between small and large dogs. People who own the latter wanted a smaller space away from the boisterous larger dogs. You can probably see the benches for owners. There are water spigots mounted over permanent water troughs and something that might serve as playground equipment for canines. The whole thing is marked with big fancy entrances, but this was a better view in the morning sun.
To access the northern half of the trail system, I took the west route that runs between the library and a senior day center. Those buildings are both visible here. Looking back up the trail through this trellis, you can just barely see off to the right a very large senior care home, too. There are pockets of undeveloped woodland all over this park system, and one of them hugs the “old folks home” off camera too the right.
About a quarter-mile farther north on the same western trail is this playground that I use as a gym. It’s been a long time, so I couldn’t do very many repetitions and I even skipped a few exercises, like the push-ups facing head-down on the long purple slide. It’s been since April that I did anything like that, so I need to build back up. It’s not because of any particular fitness goals; I do this purely for the fun of it. For me, it’s like playing. Of course, I can’t get a full workout on this gym, so I always head up around the end of this park, through the pecan grove, and around to the “blue monster.” Unlike the green one at the far opposite end of the trail system, this one sees less use and abuse, so it works much better. The hydraulic assisted footrest actually has some lift to it, for example.
From there I followed the eastern trail and spotted this new fitness gym under construction. There are no signs yet, but I can guess what each of the fixtures is for. Lots of things like this are receiving attention all at the same time, so the progress tends to be episodic.
Edit: That unfinished gym was actually a private project by an Eagle Scout that that was vandalized. The only thing I got right on this is that the city parks division will restore it sometime in the near future.
Then I rode back down to Reno Avenue and worked my way along the back streets before crossing over and heading back home. This last image is looking down Pratt Drive towards the apartment complex, just visible in the distance. All of these shots were taken using my iPhone, but I expect to need my better camera starting tomorrow.