“Just Walk” with a Doc Launches February 4
Having trouble sticking to that New Year’s resolution to get more active -- Just Walk!

That’s the advice Carondelet Health Network, in concert with the Pima County Medical Society and El Rio, is giving this year as a way to encourage Tucsonans to get out and move.

And we plan to help you get started!

El Rio Health Centers, Carondelet Health Network and Pima County Medical Society have joined a national movement to get the public to walk a mile with a physician the first three Saturdays every month.

“All of our missions involve improving public health,” said Steve Nash, PCMS Executive Director, “We want our neighbors all to become more active and one way to do that is to show them that they indeed can walk a mile.”

"Imagine having a medical doctor along for your weekend stroll,” adds Donna Zazworsky, RN, MS, CCM, FAAN, Vice President, Community Health and Continuum Services. “At Carondelet, we recognized this was a tremendous opportunity to help the public not only learn about health habits but to form healthy habits at the same time. Walking is a tremendous benefit to your health and having a doctor along with your walking group is an added bonus.”

Health benefits:
* Reduces the risk of coronary heart disease

* Improves blood pressure and blood sugar levels

* Reduces the risk of osteoporosis

* Aids in maintaining body weight and lowers the risk of obesity

* Enhances mental well-being

* Reduces the risk of breast and colon cancer

* Improves blood lipid profile

* Reduces the risk of Type 2 diabetes

Beginning in February, PCMS, CHN and El Rio will each host one walk on three different Saturdays every month through May – and probably throughout the summer and into fall. Each walk will be led by a physician who will give a brief overview of the benefits of exercise and answer general questions during the walk.

The walks are open to anyone and the courses are generally flat with some small hills. Wear comfortable shoes. You may bring a cane or walking stick, and a bottle of water. Be sure to dress for the temperatures. Please arrive at least 15 minutes prior to the walk start.

• El Rio will walk at Rudy Garcia Park, 2 E. Irvington Road. Walks scheduled so far take place February 4, March 3, April 7 and May 5 beginning at 8 a.m. For questions call: 977-6445

• PCMS will use Rillito River Park. Walks occur on February 11, March 10, April 14, May 12 and June 9. There is an 8 a.m. start for the February and March walks. April through June walks begin at 7 a.m. Questions: 795-7985. Use the parking lot on the east side of Swan, just south of the bridge. The group will meet at the Ramada by the water fountain.

• Carondelet Health Network sponsored walks will also occur at Rillito River Park on February 18, March 17, April 21, and May 19. All begin at 8 a.m. Use the parking lot on the east side of Swan, just south of the bridge. The group will meet at the Ramada by the water fountain.

Just Walk - a walk with a doc - is a program founded in 2005 by David Sabgir MD, a board-certified cardiologist in Columbus, Ohio. It has spread to 40 sites throughout the country. Just Walk is a non-profit organization dedicated to encouraging healthy physical activities for people of all ages and fitness levels.

For more information about Just Walk, log onto www.walkwithadoc.org.