from cdc.gov

moderate activity guidelines, and it even projects a step count for you! All you have to do is put in an address or intersection starting point and destination, and select ‘walking’ from the drop-down menu (‘By car’ is the default, and ‘public transit’ the other option) and you get instant walking directions that take one-way streets and sidewalks into account.

My favorite cookbook writer, Mark Bittman, put this link out on his Twitter feed today. A dynamic map showing the swift increase in obesity rates across the U.S., broken down by state. Watching the annual shift from light blue to red really brings home the swift increase in obesity. Where does your state fit in? Walking regularly is one way to combat this epidemic!

Walk Score dot com. I had heard about this website but not realized how multi-functional it was until I checked it out myself. A “walk score” is basically the number of places you can walk to from any given address. I plugged in my current address and my soon-to-be-current address and was beyond pleased to see that my home walking score would increase from 75 to 82 — with a maximum score of 100, both are quite acceptable. However, walkscore.com goes so far as to list and categorize the walkable amenities. There I could see that I am far closer to many possible walking destinations, as well as learn more about the contents of my new neighborhood. Yoga classes less than half a mile away? Sign me up!

Remember classroom pizza parties? They were such a treat. We would get a couple of greasy cardboard boxes of pizza slices, followed by a tiny plastic tub of orange and vanilla swirled ice cream. I loved to eat that ice cream with the tiny wooden paddles that were provided in lieu of spoons. Well, one Southwest Virginia school replaced its end-of-year pizza party with an activity party, and the students unanimously agreed that rock climbing and swimming are better than sitting in a classroom eating pizza. One of the most exciting parts of this story is that while many of the students qualified for the party by virtue of test scores, one kindergarten class made it in after winning a pedometer contest! Nineteen kindergarteners recorded 436,000 steps in just eight days. Pretty amazing, and awesome.

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