Students making tracks for charity

Published 12:00 am Saturday, March 6, 2004

Students of W.O. Parker Elementary School are walking from Mobile to Huntsville.

At least, they will be walking the distance.

W.O. Parmer is participating in the Walk Alabama program throughout the months of March and April, which encourages students to exercise while giving them a goal.

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&uot;We will be walking every day at P.E.,&uot; said ACES agent assistant Demetrius Scott. &uot;We have a map so that we can measure our progress every day. By the time we are done we hope to have walked the distance from one end of the state to the other.&uot;

Walk Alabama is an eight-week competitive walking program designed to get Alabamians up and moving.

In counties across the state, dozens of teams made up of friends, families or co-workers will vie to see who can be the first to walk the distance. Prizes will go to the winners.

Team goals can be as high as 850 miles with each member walking 13.28 miles per week or 1.89 miles a day. For those who are already walkers, Walk Alabama is a fun way to contribute your regular mileage to a team effort.

If a person is not a walker Walk Alabama will motivate you to start and stick with a walking program.

By the end of the program, many people feel so good that they keep going.

People that decide to make walking a hobby benefit greatly..

Walking is an easy, risk-free way to burn fat, lose weight, strengthen bones, lower blood pressure, and prevent certain cancers.

Walking can also boost your mood and add years to your life.

So far, Scott said that the response at W.O. Parmer has been great.

&uot;The children really like it,&uot; said Scott. &uot;Our goal is just to get them to participate in any kind of exercise. They have really responded to the program.&uot;

The Walk Alabama program will run from March 4 to April 28.

Those wishing to participate may recruit seven members for a team or simply sign on their own.

Teams must then choose a name or a team captain. If a person is not part of a team their goal will be 106.5 miles in eight weeks.

All members must fill out an individual registration form and submit them to the team captain or County Extension office.

For more information on the Walk Alabama program, call the Butler County Extension Office.