And so the storm is over.
Now begins what the majority of the people I’ve spoken to in my physio clinic these last few weeks describe as, “the best few days of the Christmas period”.
The time when you can relax, forget about the cooking, ignore the shops and most definitely indulge in the excess of booze and chocolate that is likely to be chilling in the fridge or stacked up in the utility room.
Warning: But if you’re not careful, the post Christmas day period can become a bit of a lull and also a bit of a waste because there really is so much you can do in or around Hartlepool.
And if you’re really un-careful and don’t stock up on a few ideas or options for things to do or places to go, you could find yourself caught out and back up in the Christmas car park mayhem of the shops again or trapped down the pub.
In my humble opinion, both of those are better exhausted in the pre-Christmas period only.
So with that in mind, here are seven very simple sneaky ways to get active with your family and to make sure you make the most of the next few days:
l Proudly wearing your new shoes or trainers, take a walk on the Headland for an hour and aim to finish it watching the sunset over the town at approx. 4pm.
l Unwrap your child’s new bike and ride it along the sea front watching the sunrise at 8am.
l With your left over sandwiches from Christmas Day, take the grandchildren to Rossmere Park to feed the ducks.
l Go to see best Yacht Club In town – No, not the one at the Marina, the dozen or so men who congregate at Ward Jackson Park each day to sail their small remote control boats. Their energy is infectious and well worth getting in on. And while you’re there, do a few laps of the park to get the joints warm and finish with a nice hot chocolate with marshmallows in the cafe in the park.
l With the friend who you promised “we must catch up over Christmas” do six laps of Summerhill and have the chat there instead of the pub or sat on your couch.
l If you’re planning on taking any of the boxes or wrapping paper to the town skip, park up at the Newburn Bridge and take a walk along the sea front or walk through the Burn Valley afterwards.
l With the whole of Grayfields or the Rec to yourself due to the footy seasonChristmas break, take your boy and put his new footy boots to the test and get the first bit of mud on his new strip.
For the next few days make the most of Hartlepool and everything it has to offer. Even better do it with your friends and family for double enjoyment.
I’ll be back in touch with more helpful advice and tips to keep you and your family active in the 2014, in the first week of the new year.
Thank you so much for all the nice comments on the column and the your support for reading it this last year. If there are any concerning health or lifestyle questions you want answering, please get in touch with me personally at firstname.lastname@example.org.