Improve health step by step: Walk at work on April 29

Walking2_177522213Take the first steps to better health by walking at work on Wednesday, April 29. Get up from your desk and on your feet for a walk at lunch or anytime during the day.

The City is encouraging all employees to find time during the day to walk, and is hoping Walk at Work Day can mark the beginning of a healthy daily activity for them.

Walk at Work Day coincides with National Walk@Lunch Day and is designed to complement—not compete with—busy lifestyles. Created to improve personal health and decrease the costs of healthcare for both employers and employees, National Walk@Lunch Day is an extension of the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association’s WalkingWorks program.

KCMO employees who work at or close to City Hall are invited to meet at City Hall for a brisk (30-minute) walk at lunch on April 29. Join your coworkers at 12 noon or 12:30 p.m. for a one-mile walk around downtown Kansas City. For employees who do not work close to City Hall, find time during your day, at lunch or not, to go for a walk.

Studies have found that regular walking, particularly at a brisk pace of 3 miles per hour, can promote health and wellness by substantially reducing your risk for heart disease and other chronic conditions. In fact, here are five great reasons to make walking part of your daily routine.

  1. Walking improves fitness. Even 30 minutes of walking three times each week will increase cardiorespiratory fitness. Plus, walking can help trim your waistline.
  2. Walking boosts your mood. Research shows that walking several times each week, consistently, can alleviate symptoms of depression. A daily walking routine also gives you more energy to do more things that you enjoy.
  3. Walking prevents type 2 diabetes. Walking does more than help you lose fat or maintain weight, it actually helps balance your blood sugar, decreasing your chances of developing diabetes.
  4. Walking makes your heart stronger. Statistics show that walking can dramatically decrease your chance of suffering a heart attack or stroke.
  5. Walking increases bone density. Putting stress on your bones through walking or other strength training actually helps create density to keep them strong and healthy, according to the American Heart Association.

Walking at lunch or during the day is an easy and fun way to begin your own walking routine and manage your health. For more information, contact Jill Monroe, wellness program manager for the Fountain of Health.