Thousands of walkers will descend on the California State University, Stanislaus campus on Saturday, Sept. 16 for the American Heart Association’s annual Stanislaus Heart & Stroke Walk with the goal of setting up participants to get ‘Healthy For Good.’
The annual Heart & Stroke Walk is the largest local event for the association and is expected to draw over 2000 walkers while raising over $250,000. Funds raised from the event will go toward the American Heart Association’s overall goal to help fund research and find better ways to treat and prevent cardiovascular disease and stroke.
What does it mean to be Healthy For Good? Healthy For Good is the American Heart Association’s revolutionary movement to inspire lasting change in your health and your life, one small step at a time. The movement is centered around four pillars to encourage healthy behavior: Eat smart. Add color. Move more. Be well. The Heart Walk falls under the Move more designation.
“Cardiovascular diseases, including stroke, are the leading cause of death both in the United States and worldwide,” said Warren Kirk, CEO of Tenet Healthcare’s Central Valley Market. “We need to change this statistic and in order to do that, we need to focus on raising awareness in our own communities. We’re committed to helping the local community understand our greatest health threats and take action to improve our health. We’re proud to align with the American Heart Association’s Healthy For Good movement to help achieve the goal of helping people live longer, healthier lives and wiping out cardiovascular diseases.”
Doctors Medical Center, Emanuel Medical Center and Doctors Hospital of Manteca are spearheading the movement as the local Healthy For Good cause sponsors in Modesto and Stanislaus County and recently signed on to continue their efforts for the next year. They are also leading this year’s fundraising efforts and currently have the top two Heart Walk teams, each having raised over $18,000 thus far.
The non-competitive 5K Heart Walk, which participants can walk or run, will feature teams of employees from local companies as well as community teams. Friends and family members of all ages are invited to join. Heart disease and stroke survivors will receive special survivor caps to distinguish them from the rest of the pack. There will also be a special one-mile course for survivors and others that might need to restrict their exercise because of medical needs.
Participants are invited to stick around and peruse the health expo where they will find healthy snack samples, live entertainment, a kids zone with fun activities, CPR training and much more.
According to the American Heart Association, walking is the simplest positive change individuals can make to effectively improve their heart health because it’s free, easy and has the lowest dropout rate of any exercise. Research has shown walking is the single most effective form of exercise to achieve heart health. The benefits of walking and moderate physical activity for as little as 30 minutes each day can help reduce the risk of heart disease and stroke – the number one and number five killers of Americans, respectively.
Registration for the Stanislaus Heart & Stroke Walk is free. For information on participating or to make a donation, visit www.stanislausheartwalk.org or call 209-598-8220.
Doctors Medical Center, Emanuel Medical Center and Doctors Hospital of Manteca are the local Healthy For Good cause sponsors.