A Billion Steps: Healthier population is goal

Published 8:47 am Thursday, January 5, 2017

Walk it off. Stroll through the woods. Discover those sidewalks.

The Healthy Davie Wellness Group is sponsoring a community-wide challenge that will require participation from residents throughout the Davie County.

Kickoff for the Healthy Davie Challenge will be Saturday, Jan. 21 at Davie County High School from 10 a.m.-2 p.m. The challenge will bring residents together to meet a common goal – 1,000,000,000 steps in 100 days – but it will also provide information about many health related topics and could improve the overall health of Davie residents, one step at a time.

Accept the challenge and enjoy friends, neighbors, co-workers, families, and some you don’t even know in an effort to walk 1,000,000,000 steps in 100 days.


People need to know their lifestyles may be damaging their health. The initiative will provide information about healthy habits; and encourage everyone to participate in an effort to improve their health.

If you can walk, you can participate. It doesn’t matter how fast or how slow, it’s the steps that count. You can even convert time spent in other activities, such as cycling and workout classes, into step equivalents for participation.

Why 1,000,000,000 steps?

Walking improves health, and it counters sedentary jobs and hobbies by walking the dog, parking far from the store, taking the stairs, or scheduling a walking meeting.

“Walking is exercise that’s accessible to most people in most places,” said Jane Simpson, president of the Davie Community Foundation. “It improves cardiovascular health, strengthens bones and boosts mood. It uses calories. And it’s simple. One billion steps gives us a large enough goal to encourage participation throughout the county – young and old – if we want to be successful.”

Put on some comfortable walking shoes and start counting those steps. Visit the Davie Community Foundation website at www.daviefoundation.org  for more information and to sign up to record steps to meet the challenge. You will find a variety of information to improve overall health along with links to Wake Forest Baptist Health and Novant Health for more detailed assessments.

Here are some tips to consider when planning your participation:

• To be in good health, experts recommend a minimum of 150 minutes a week at moderate intensity (and not all on the weekend).

• For weight loss, experts recommend 300 minutes a week of moderate activity or 150 minutes of vigorous activity in addition to a healthful diet of appropriate portions. Walking one mile is approximately 2,000 steps.

• It helps to walk with vigor. Move your arms. Stand up straight. After all, getting from the kitchen sink to the bedroom, unless you live in a castle, is not going to do much good.

• The pace should be fast enough that it’s hard to sing, slow enough that it’s reasonable to talk.

• Log it, record your steps. Psychologists tell us that people who keep track of their steps are the people who are most successful with behavior change long-term.

• Meeting your goal doesn’t mean it’s OK to sit the rest of the day. You may cancel out some of those benefits so get up as much as you can.

“Join us to meet the challenge and improve the overall health of Davie County, one step at a time. Together we will walk … 1,000,000,000 steps in 100 Days.”