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Statewide walks offer steps toward better health

October 2, 2012
Messenger News

Area residents will have another chance Wednesday to help Iowa become the healthiest state in the nation by 2016 by putting on their walking shoes during Iowa's second Start Somewhere Walk.

Gov. Terry Branstad and Lt. Gov. Kim Reynolds have again called on Iowans to join in a 1-kilometer walk. On Oct. 7, 2011, more than 291,000 Iowans, including approximately 5,000 people at more than 20 sites around Fort Dodge, participated in simultaneous walks.

Many walks will be held at noon Wednesday, but walks are encouraged throughout the day. It's not too late; walkers can still sign up at

"Iowans turned out in extraordinary numbers for last year's kick off of the five-year Healthiest State Initiative," Branstad said. "We're encouraging even more Iowans to join in this symbolic event and to enjoy a short stroll during our state's beautiful autumn weather."

The Healthiest State Initiative is a privately led, public effort.

"The intent of the Healthiest State Initiative this year will continue to champion existing well-being programs with special emphasis on encouraging local walk groups, workplace well-being, consumption of fruits and vegetables and smoking cessation," Branstad said. "Progress in these areas will translate to a healthier Iowa and better quality of life for all its residents."

In addition to walking, Branstad and Reynolds are encouraging Iowans to add one more wellness activity to their day Wednesday.

Locally, that could include taking advantage of any of Webster County's beautiful parks, swimming a few laps at the Fort Dodge Community Recreation Center or tackling some home landscaping projects while Mother Nature is still cooperative.

By participating Wednesday, you can do yourself, your family, your community and your state a favor. So, get those shoes on and get moving.



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