The Ottumwa Courier


September 28, 2012

An easy, healthy walk: Event partners with city’s Blue Zone effort

OTTUMWA — Some say Americans are too hooked on convenience, sometimes adding that many of us do not get enough exercise. But those two sayings can work together.

“Make the healthy choice the easy choice,” said Tom Sisler, executive director of the Ottumwa YMCA. He’s one of the organizers for the upcoming 1-kilometer Healthiest State Walk at noon on Wednesday.

State organizers say they want to see more participation than the 291,000 Iowans who took a stroll in the Healthiest State Initiative’s “Start Somewhere” walk in 2011.

Wednesday’s walk will partner with Ottumwa’s Blue Zone healthy community effort.

“Making these things easy and part of our life, that’s really the Blue Zone secret,” said Sisler. “Our efforts are to make this as convenient as possible by locating walking spots around town.”

A kilometer is about a 12-minute stroll for the average walker. The object of the event is to get Iowans up and moving.

“Make it fun. Go with somebody, whether it’s your pet, your son or daughter or your best friend,” Sisler said. “Have a good conversation and you won’t even know you did it.”

In 2011, Gov. Terry  Branstad announced the plan to make Iowa the healthiest state in the nation within five years. In 2011, Iowa ranked 16th compared to all other states, up from the 19th position in 2010.

“The Healthiest State Initiative this year,” announced Branstad, “will continue to champion ... local walk groups, workplace well-being, consumption of fruits and vegetables, and smoking cessation. Progress in these areas will translate to a healthier Iowa and better quality of life for all its residents.”

“By itself, of course,” added Sisler, “a 1-kilometer walk is not enough to change the health of the state, but we’re encouraging even more residents of the Ottumwa area to join in this year’s event and maintain our momentum.”

Now the trick is to let everyone know about the walk so Wapello County residents can do something positive together, he said.

“It’s fun bringing the community together for something so healthy and easy — easy as a walk around the block.”

Healthiest State Walk locations

OTTUMWA — Residents interested in joining the Healthiest State Walk can go to one of the following locations before noon Wednesday:

• Ottumwa Park, near tennis courts

• United Way office, 224 E. Second St.

• John Deere levee walk, 928 E Vine St.

• Wildwood Elementary School 

• Salvation Army, West Second Street.

• Tenco, Gateway Drive.

• Ottumwa Regional Health Center, Pennsylvania Ave.

Or take a walk around the block in your neighborhood.

Text Only
  • 0424 OTT Pennsylvania construction color photo -M -T Penn Ave. construction begins Thursday

    OTTUMWA — Motorists are advised that Pennsylvania Avenue will be closing for Stage 1 of the Pennsylvania Avenue Reconstruction and Widening Project on Thursday. Pennsylvania Avenue will be closed from just downhill from the intersection with Jefferso

    April 23, 2014 1 Photo

  • The most fun you ever had

    OTTUMWA — Not every child's idea will be possible — but every idea was recorded. "Kaboom" project manager Brenna Hull of the nonprofit group's San Francisco office was in Ottumwa Tuesday. She asked students at the Ottumwa school district what they'd like to see in a playground.

    April 22, 2014

  • 0423 OTT Recycle center color photo 2 -T -M Where every day is Earth Day

    OTTUMWA — Putting cans in the correct bin, saving electricity and adjusting the thermostat are not new concepts to the Ottumwa/Wapello Recycling Center staff. "We try to practice what we preach," said Janice Bain,

    April 22, 2014 2 Photos

  • 0423 OTT lottery retailers graph -T -M Hoping for riche$ — Part 2

    OTTUMWA — We’ve all heard countless stories of lottery winners and losers. The winners, some of whom hold down multiple jobs, have modest dreams for now. One wants to buy a new home or car, another wants to pay of their debts or give to charity and e

    April 22, 2014 1 Photo 3 Stories

  • 0422 OTT Lottery graph -T -L -M Hoping for riche$ — Part 1

    OTTUMWA — Despite a struggling economy — or perhaps because of it — Iowa lottery tickets sales have surged over the past decade in southeast Iowa. Since the lottery began 1985, its players have won more than $3.2 billion in prizes while the lottery h

    April 21, 2014 1 Photo 3 Stories

  • 0418 OTT Tree City U.S.A. logo Ottumwa awarded as Tree City U.S.A. again OTTUMWA — Having big, beautiful trees throughout a community can help spruce up a city and make it more attractive to visitors. Ottumwa has shown a dedication to making the community more green and inviting, and the efforts have been recognized by th

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • 0418 OTT OEDC director -T Guiding our growth

    OTTUMWA — An organization designed to help Ottumwa grow has found a new employee in Indiana. The Ottumwa Economic Development Corporation (OEDC) board has chosen Sharon Stroh as the group's new executive director. “We are confident she will hit the g

    April 17, 2014 1 Photo

  • 0417 OTT Camp Wapello fence photo -T -M -L Good fence irritates good neighbor DRAKESVILLE — For 82 years, Camp Wapello’s iconic entryway has welcomed people to peacefully coexist with nature. Now there’s a 400-foot barbed wire fence down the middle of the road. In February, Davis County Supervisors approved vacating of portion

    April 16, 2014 1 Photo

  • City Council approves sale of properties OTTUMWA — On Tuesday the Ottumwa City Council met for the last regularly scheduled meeting of April. Included in the agenda for the evening were several dispositions of city owned property. Structures and land located at 519 W. Fourth St., 723 E. Mar

    April 15, 2014

  • Where to play OTTUMWA — The Ottumwa Community School District wants to discuss moving to another athletic conference. Superintendent Davis Eidahl revealed that the district has been contacted by a smaller sports league, which has extended an invitation to join the

    April 15, 2014

AP National