Advocate BroMenn Medical Center and the American Heart Association will encourage walking as an easy form of physical activity by designating two sets of community walking paths in the Bloomington-Normal area. On National Walking Day, April 3, the two organizations will launch designated paths in the Downtown Bloomington area and on the Illinois State University Campus.
Designating community walking paths is part of the American Heart Association’s My Heart. My Life initiative, which encourages proper nutrition, physical activity and obesity prevention. The platform is locally sponsored by Advocate BroMenn Medical Center. Local walking paths will be uploaded in the American Heart Association’s online walking paths map on startwalkingnow.org, which highlights safe, free paths around the country. Smartphone users can also upload paths through the American Heart Association’s Walking Paths App for Android and iPhone.
Downtown Bloomington Walking Paths
Downtown Bloomington visitors and workers are invited to participate in guided walking tours of the newly designated paths, pick up pedometers and other heart health information, and enjoy free, heart-healthy snacks. The newly designated walking paths each carry a theme, including All About Downtown (.75 miles), Retail Therapy (.9 miles) and Entertainment. Maps will be available.
When: 11:30 a.m. – 1 p.m., Wednesday, April 3rd
Short remarks from the American Heart Association and Advocate BroMenn Medical Center will take place at 11:45 a.m.
Where: Courthouse Square, Downtown Bloomington.
Illinois State University Paths
ISU Campus Recreation and Health Promotion and Wellness is reaching out to students and faculty to take a walk together around the campus quad. Students and faculty will be invited to take a walk together on one of the four paths, and can also have free Subway sandwiches and pedometers to track their steps. All those who participate will be eligible to win a $100 Subway gift card.
Last fall, ISU Health Promotion and Wellness launched their own campus walking paths. At the event they will kick off a “Pick Your Path” contest in which the ISU community will vote on its favorite path. The winning path will be designated as an American Heart Association walking path.
When: 12 p.m., Wednesday, April 3
Where: ISU Quad
The American Heart Association focuses on walking as an easy way to fit in 30 minutes of exercise per day. It is an exercise method that most people can do, and has the lowest dropout rate of physical activities.
Research has shown that the benefits of walking and moderate physical activity for at least 30 minutes a day can help you:
• Reduce the risk of coronary heart disease
• Improve blood pressure and blood sugar levels
• Improve blood lipid profile
• Maintain body weight and lower the risk of obesity
• Enhance mental well being
• Reduce the risk of osteoporosis
• Reduce the risk of breast and colon cancer
• Reduce the risk of non-insulin dependent (type 2) diabetes
For more information on walking paths and walking as a form of physical activity, log on to www.startwalkingnow.org. For more information on local activities for the American Heart Association, visit www.heart.org/centralil.