Although winter isn't officially over, I feel blessed that it's been a fairly mild one here in Maryland. Pretty routinely, I've been able to get my walking exercise in, with only a few weeks requiring a boring round of circles in the local mall. Today, it was still a bit cold, but glorious nonetheless, with lots of people out walking, running, jogging. It was great to see, and I know spring is right around the corner, so more and more people will be looking to come out of hibernation and get active.
This past week, I had a great meeting with the Coordinator of Walk Carroll, part of a state-wide health initiative to get people to get moving. According to the American Medical Association, more that 60 percent of American adults fail to get the recommended amount of regular exercise, and 25 percent are completely inactive. The AMA recommends healthy adults should accumulate an hour of exercise on most, if not all days of the week (AMA Complete Guide to Prevention and Wellness, p. 47-63).
Here in my hometown, this is what we planned out, starting the week after Easter. Gathering folks twice a week for a healthy, hour-long walk. On Wednesdays, we'll meet at a local park with great trails and accessibility, and then on Saturday mornings at the Mall for what's known as a 10 x 10 (10,000 steps by 10 am). Last year, we got off to a late start and didn't begin walking as a group until August. This year, however, we're way ahead of the game, and with 70 people on our mailing list, we're sure to draw them and more with our consistent schedule. I truly can't wait!
No matter where you live, now is the time to develop a new exercise routine. After checking with your doctor, start moving! Find a group, walk your dog in your neighborhood, make some new friends. Get healthy and active. Most of all, have fun!
I should add that this upcoming Saturday (March 17th), I'll be leading a mini-retreat at Bon Secours Retreat Center in Baltimore. The theme? Prayer Walking! If you're in the Baltimore area, please consider joining us by signing up here.
See you on the trail!