The Widdershins

Activist Wednesday: I’m Walkin’…

Posted on: January 8, 2014

MB's Frozen Mailbox

MB’s Frozen Mailbox

Well well well, look what I found in MadamaB’s Mailbox yesterday! It’s a new miracle drug that can help prevent many of our top killer diseases of today. And you know, it won’t cost you a darn thing.

Researchers have discovered a “wonder drug” for many of today’s most common medical problems, says Dr. Bob Sallis, a family practitioner at a Kaiser Permanente clinic in Fontana, California. It’s been proven to help treat or prevent diabetes, depression, breast and colon cancer, high blood pressure, cardiovascular disease, obesity, anxiety, and osteoporosis, Sallis told leaders at the 2013 Walking Summit in Washington, D.C.

“The drug is called walking,” Sallis announced. “Its generic name is physical activity.”

Recommended dosage is 30 minutes a day, five days a week, but children should double that to 60 minutes a day, seven days a week. Side effects may include weight loss, improved mood, improved sleep and bowel habits, stronger muscles and bones, as well as looking and feeling better.

Now we’ve all heard for years that walking is good for you. I’ve heard many variations on this theme, including one recommendation from the Wellness advocates at my company: wear a pedometer and track your steps per day. But I’ve always thought that an amount of time was the best measurement of how much exercise you should be doing, and by far, the easiest to accomplish. I may be a detail-oriented semi-control freak, but even I don’t find the thought of tracking each step I take very appealing. A half an hour, though? Yeah, I can do that.

But walking isn’t just good medicine and good sense. And I’m not here to preach to you all about walking half an hour a day, since I know that wouldn’t be possible for some of you (although, I think I ‘m going to add it to my exercise repertoire on a more regular basis). It’s also a new movement. You knew there was a reason it was in an Activist Wednesday post!

The 2013 Walking Summit focused on how to encourage more Americans to walk, and how to make communities across the country more walkable. Scott Bricker, executive director of America Walks, a coalition of 470 organizations nationwide, joked that the ultimate goal was to make “sitting the new smoking.” His ambitious vision for 2020 is that all Americans walk enough each day to enjoy health benefits and that all communities provide a safe, comfortable environment for people to walk.

Vanessa Garrison, co-founder of Girl Trek, which organizes walking groups for African-American women and girls to “improve their health and heal their communities,” opened the summit by announcing, “Neighbor, we’ve got work to do!”


Garrison emphasized that walking should be a natural part of our daily lives, rather than something we add on specifically for exercise, health or recreation. “I have the pleasure of walking every day to the store, the dry cleaners, the post office, to the park with my husband. That’s no accident,” she said. It’s the result of deliberate urban planning that locates important destinations within walking distance—a traditional common-sense idea called walkability, which is at the heart of making our communities more safe, comfortable, and convenient for walking.

I am very encouraged by this new movement, especially the part that involves urban re-design to make communities walkable throughout the country. I know that walkability is a huge part of why we moved to our current location (hubby walks to the train station to commute), and why New York can be such a great place to live. It’s a vision I am very glad to see people fighting for, and the best part? It seems fairly politically bullet-proof. I mean, I don’t put anything past the Tea Partiers, but even they shouldn’t be able to find anything wrong with using the legs Gawd gave us to perambulate around the neighborhood. That seems very patriotic and full of “American Exceptionalism” to me. 🙂

Meanwhile, America Walks has some worthy organizations as members, Widdershins. For today, it would be great if you took a look at the website and see if there are any listed there that strike your fancy, and are worthy of either membership, or a small donation, or both.

This is an ambulatory, open thread.


20 Responses to "Activist Wednesday: I’m Walkin’…"

Why couldn’t it be chocolate??? Can it be chocolate??

Is anyone else following this latest Chris Christie fiasco. Holy crap. That’s Chicago-style politics right there in NJ, home of The Sopranos.

Indeed it is.

And this jerk is resigning.

I love how concerned he is for the privacy of the victims.

I love to walk, and do it almost everyday. I also ride my exercise bike in front of the tv every night. My whole family love walking and exercise. My 83 yr mama goes for a long walk everyday on an urban trail across the street from her house, swims at the Y twice a week and works out with weights. Great post.

I read about the latest Chris Christie scandal. What a bunch of jerks. There should be some firings over that. The citizens of Fort Lee should do a massive protest and tie up all lanes on a road that the governor and his honchos use.

Here are some astonishing pix of icy Chicago during this cold snap:

DYB, very interesting about the AF General. I bet he still gets his full pension and benefits.

socalannie> Oh yeah, I’m sure he will. They thanked him for so many years of wonderful service! He’s basically retiring early for his troubles.

Likely so.

And with Christie, I think this scandal is basically the end of his Presidential aspirations. Too much to hope for?

Afraid so. Some will attribute this buffoonish behavior to strength, as they have all of his previous episodes.

I don’t know… I mean, he punished a town of 35,000 because he didn’t like something their mayor did. This is positively medieval. Your lord does something the King doesn’t like, kill the whole village!

Behold the Lord, High Executioner!

{{{{DYB!}}}} (Waves!) Good to see you.

annie@5: We’ve risen up above freezing today and now people are finding out the hard way about their frozen and busted pipes! Plumbers will be making a fortune.

@1 – DYB, wouldn’t that be awesome! I would LOVE for it to be chocolate.

I totally agree with you about Christie. He is a local politico and his appeal will not go outside of NJ. He might run anyway, but he will implode a la Giuliani. 😉

Socal, that is great that you and your family exercise so regularly. I have just been considering getting something to use while watching TV at night, maybe a treadmill. My apartment is kind of small, though. 🙂

MB, our townhouse/condo is small also, tiny living room. But someone offered me their brand new exercise bike (a small one), so I took and just decided what the heck, our living room is crowded anyway with musical instruments, so what if I crowd a bike in there. When we have company, I put it outside. I worked so much during the holiday season that I lost at least 10 lbs, a full size. Both my parents were really into exercise, especially walking, and swimming.

Inspiring, Socal! I will have to look for something small that won’t overwhelm us. I guess I could store it on the balcony. It’s so freaking cold though! LOL

Of course! He knows nothing. There are two possibilities. When the lanes were closed and the controversy started – Christie was already denying any involvement. But he knew the lanes were closed and he repeated the lies that it was because of some study. Did he actually not ask his staff what the heck was going on? Of course he asked them. So the possibilities are: they lied to him and said they were not involved. Or he knew what was happening. Frankly, I would find it hard to believe that all these people he knew lied to him at the time. He’s their buddy, it’s the sort of thing he’s been doing for ages; punishing opponents. My guess is they thought it was all perfectly legit because it’s how their boss rolls. I would find the idea that he did not know anything about it while denying all involvement (him and his staff) very hard to believe.

Agree, DYB. As I’m reading up on this more, there are other examples of Christie using his office to “punish” those who don’t fall in line with him. He has established a culture of bullying, and it’s coming back to bite him in the *ss.

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