Put one foot in front of the other

By Buck Traxler, I-O Editor
Put one foot in front of the other
A LITTLE TREAD LEFT — Fifth grade Prairie View School student Emily Harwood still has some tread left on her walking “tennies” as she laces them up before heading out for some recreation time at the school. She won an award for being the student with the most walking miles at the school with over 40 logged in. I-O Photo by Buck Traxler
   Open the door and put one foot in front of the other.
   That’s the message for this National Start Walking Day in Montana - with the goal of reducing the risk of heart disease and stroke.
   Emily Harwood, a fifth grader in Carole Brownell’s class at Prairie View School already knows this.
   She was the top “walker” at the school in a walking project to keep in shape. She related that walkers took a trek around the sidewalk in front of PVS and when all was said and done, she had logged in more than 40 miles.
   During the basketball season, you may have noticed a young blonde student walking around the court during the games. That would of course have been Harwood, who like the “energizer bunny” just keeps going and going.
   She tells The I-O, “Walking is easy to do and good for your health. You can do it almost anywhere and at any time.”
   Harwood added, “Walking doesn’t cost a lot, all you need is  a good pair of sneakers or shoes.”
   The American Heart Association (AHA) is sponsoring the ‘start-walking day’ and AHA president Dr. Timothy Gardner says “the idea is to sneak in a few extra steps throughout the day for a total of a half hour of moderate exercise.”

   “If people were able to walk, just walk, every day of the week for 30 minutes, they would see a significant improvement in their overall health condition,”

he says.
   He went on to add, “Walking doesn’t require a gym membership or special clothes or equipment.” 

   Brownell related to the paper that Harwood is always trying something new and being a straight A student, “She’s a pleasure to have in the classroom.”
   Harwood, who obviously is a big advocate of walking also notes that the benefits of putting one foot in front of the other are endless.
   She will tell you that walking gives you more energy, helps you feel good, relax and sleep better.
   Research shows that the physical activity of walking also helps tone your muscles, control your appetite and can help you to lose and maintain weight.
   In addition, the physical activity of walking helps reduce your risk for developing chronic disease, such as diabetes, heart disease and others by as much as 30-50 percent.
   Small steps can make a big difference, so get out and begin to walk for better health.
   She is the daughter of Mark and Tina Harwood of Conrad.