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Now that’s urban renewal

When a freeway becomes a river, this is what happens. The Cheonggyecheon Freeway used to carry nearly 170,000 vehicles through the heart of Seoul, South Korea, every day. A decade ago, in the face of angry protests, a crusading mayor torn down the elevated 16-lane highway, replacing it with an urban boulevard and park, and “daylighting”…

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New Year’s revolution

An oldie but a goodie, Dr. Mike Evans’ smash-hit video (3.7 million views and counting) on the single most constructive thing you can do for your health. It came to mind, yet again, because of Doc Evans’ advice in today’s Globe and Mail, a new-year list of things to do to be more healthy this…

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Someday

Heading to Kingston, Ontario, for the weekend. By car, unfortunately. Even when it’s -38 C (with the windchill), walking is fine. As I learned while living in Edmonton for a decade, layer up, cover your face, and your biggest worry will be sweating too much. There is a trail between my home in Ottawa and…

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Maintain your brain

Not only does walking help people process traumatic memories and deal with stress, it also helps stave off cognitive and memory problems. How? By preventing brain shrinkage — an important factor in the fight against both mild cognitive impairment and Alzheimer’s disease. “Because a cure for Alzheimer’s is not yet a reality, we hope to…

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Walking away from PTSD

My Q&A on ex-Marine Sean Gobin’s Warrior Hike program, in which American war vets thru-hike the 2,180-mile-long Appalachian Trail to come to terms with the traumatic sights and sounds of battle, ran as the Big Idea feature in the Focus section of Saturday’s Globe and Mail. Considering how Canadian soldiers returning from Afghanistan are struggling…