By Johanna Hicks
With warm weather here, many folks are getting outdoors to work in gardens, enjoy our local parks, camp, watch student sports, and take walks. The Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Service Master Wellness Volunteers are proud to announce that we will be hosting “Walk Thru Texas History” (WTTH) during May.
Walk Through Texas History is a four-week program designed to help Texans establish the habit of regular physical activity while learning the rich history of Texas. Each adult team may include eight team members working together to reach designated goals while following along legendary historical paths created by fellow Texans.
In 2021, three teams participated in WTTH, logging 1,599 miles. For the 2022 program, two new routes are being developed, which will be available by the time May rolls around.
Contact my office at 903-885-3443 if you would like to participate. If you want to recruit friends, co-workers, or family members to participate, I welcome you to serve as a team captain. As mentioned, each team may have up to eight participants. I’ll set up a league for Hopkins County and provide the team captain with a code for them to deliver to team members to register. If you are hesitant to serve as a team captain or participate on a team, I’ll walk you through the steps. Then, start logging steps on the WTTH link. I have pedometers available for anyone who wishes to participate, or you may use your health tracking device. Then, you can walk at your leisure, in your neighborhood, in parks, etc.
Walk Thru Texas history will kick off on May 2, the earliest date to start logging steps, and we’ll wrap up on May 27. Participants will receive a weekly recipe and update on steps/miles logged for each team.
As provided by the Centers for Disease Control, a few facts about Hopkins County residents: 35% of Hopkins County residents report being physically inactive, and 7,200 reports having poor or fair health. The obesity rate in Hopkins County is 31%. The regular physical activity proved to have significant health benefits. Moving more and sitting less benefit everyone, regardless of age or current fitness level. Regular physical activity favorably influences seven of the ten most common chronic diseases.
As a side note, Head Start parents and staff will have the opportunity to participate in an 8-week program called Walk & Talk. A face-to-face session will be held once a week for a brief nutrition segment or food demonstration, walking together to log steps/miles.
This program will take place in the fall. In 2021, three teams participated and logged 2,634 miles. Of those returning the wrap-up surveys, 100% increased the number of days they were physically active and indicated benefiting from the program. They also enjoyed sampling recipes and camaraderie.
Our Hopkins County Master Wellness Volunteers will lead the effort to implement Walk Thru Texas History. We hope you will decide to take part. Again, contact the Texas A&M AgriLife Extension Office at 903-885-3443 if you have questions or wish to join a team.
Don’t give up just because something is hard. Pushing through challenges is what makes you grow. – Luvvie Ajayi Jones
Johanna Hicks, B.S., M.Ed.
Texas A&M AgriLife Extension
Family & Community Health Agent
P.O. Box 518
1200-B W. Houston
Sulphur Springs, TX 75483
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