Get out for a leisurely walk – with the mayor

Courtesy photoThe Capital Area Wellness Coalition wants you to take part in the annual Mayor's Walk on June 1.
Courtesy photoThe Capital Area Wellness Coalition wants you to take part in the annual Mayor's Walk on June 1.

For the Insider

Sitting disease. Have you heard of it? The average American is sitting nine to 11 hours per day. As a matter of fact, we’ve engineered activity right out of our life. What that means is sitting is now one of the biggest risk factors for preventable diseases such as diabetes, heart disease and certain types of cancer.

Research has shown that when we sit, electrical activity in the legs shuts down, our calorie burning drops, enzymes that break down fat decrease, good cholesterol is lowered and our telomeres shorten.

What are telomeres? They are little ‘caps’ on the ends of our DNA that protect against chromosomal damage and impact how quickly we age. Thankfully there’s a really simple cure . . . . move more! And one of the most easily accessible and inexpensive movement options is walking. Walking is about more than just fitness and disease prevention. It’s been shown to improve cognitive function in the brain, reduce depression, strengthen bones and improve ‘physical function’, the ability of someone to maintain function throughout life and reduce rates of disability. What’s more is that Concord is full of easily accessible walking paths, trails and sidewalks ready for some foot traffic. Take the Main Street Project currently making downtown Concord a great place to walk, visit historic markers and support local vendors. To jumpstart your downtown walk, join Mayor Jim Bouley and the Capital Area Wellness Coalition for their third annual Mayor’s Walk on June 1 at 9 a.m.

Starting at State House Plaza (rain or shine) and ending with a Wellness Fair in Bicentennial Square (shine only), this walk celebrates our walkable community. Grab some friends, neighbors and co-workers and come on down.

As a matter of fact, the challenge is on to see who can come with the most followers, the biggest group, the craziest T-shirts, you name it – we’d love to have you there!

If you’d rather a touch of nature, Concord is home to over 20 free trails waiting for your happy feet. The trails range from less than a mile to over seven miles and include beginner and more advanced terrain. For more details, visit concordnh.gov/trails.

If walking isn’t your thing, the capital area is full of resources to help you get moving. The winners of this year’s Capital Area Well Done! Awards are shining examples of the great wellness work being done in our community.

The Well Done! Awards recognize and bring to the forefront wellness activities taking place at worksites, among community groups and through the leadership of unsung wellness heroes.

This year’s winners include:

Well Workplace: Havenwood Heritage Heights

Community Wellness Effort: Jazzercise of Concord

Wellness Heroes: Christine Cook (Positive Energy) and Jeremy Woodward (Jeremy’s Bootcamp).

Additional resources can be found at capwellness.org.

The Capital Area Wellness Coalition coordinates community resources and builds partnerships to create a culture of healthy living for everyone. The CAWC meets monthly on the second Wednesday at 8 a.m. at the Center for Health Promotion, 49 S. Main St. Visit capwellness.org to learn more.

By VALERIE FERLAND

Author: By VALERIE FERLAND

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