Residents will soon have the chance to join a new club for free, enjoy the outdoors with their neighbors and get a little exercise.
The City’s Parks and Recreation Department announced the formation of the “10K Club,” a group of individuals who will meet periodically to explore trails around town together in an effort to get 10,000 steps in a day.
Walking 10,000 steps a day is not an official recommendation from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Instead, the organization recommends adults engage in 150 minutes of moderate activity a week, such as brisk walking. But with many electronic fitness devices using 10,000 steps as a benchmark goal nowadays, the number has become more commonly discussed.
Parks and Recreation Manager Betsy Eckhardt said the idea for the group came about through a staff discussion and reviewing recent survey results that indicated people's desires to find more ways to utilize the local trails.
“One of the main objectives we got back from all that always centered around the trails. People want to utilize our trails better, but they want to connect with people on the trails,” Eckhardt said. “Walking groups, biking groups, doing something as a community on the trails.”
Eckhardt said it can be hard for people to get out and exercise when working 8 a.m.-5 p.m. jobs most of the week. But she’s hoping organizing the walking meetings can be a way to get more people active on a regular basis and improve their health.
Walking for regular activity can help reduce your risk of common health problems, such as heart disease, depression, high blood pressure, diabetes and obesity, according to Mayo Clinic.
The 10K Club has a Facebook page that can be found by searching for it on the social media platform or through the City of Columbus NE Parks and Recreation Facebook page. Eckhardt said the department will post walking meetings on the page, with hopes to get one organized as soon as next week if the weather cooperates. The ultimate goal is for people to make connections and not need Parks and Rec to organize the walks in time, but officials are happy to lace up their shoes with everyone else.
“All you have to do is show up,” Eckhardt said. “Come make friends, get extra steps and see what the trails are like. That’s all you have to do.”