Walk for Heart Health with UW Medicine on Oct. 12!

Posted on by Matthew Leib. This entry was posted in Volunteerism and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

Whenever you walk, move, or exercise, you’re doing your heart a world of good. According to the American Heart Association, exercising 30 minutes a day five days a week will improve your heart health and help reduce your risk of heart disease, the leading cause of death in the United States, affecting one in every four women and men.

So what would happen if thousands turned up to walk together?

It wouldn’t just be a great thing to do for individual heart health; it would make a world of difference for the heart health of the hundreds of thousands of people with heart disease and the millions more at risk of developing it.

That’s exactly what’s going to happen on Saturday, October 12, when The Whole U and UW Medicine join the American Heart Association at Seattle Center for the Seattle Heart and Stroke Walk to walk 5 kilometers (3.1 miles) to raise funds for advances in heart research, treatment, and education. Participating is the ultimate feel good, do good Saturday morning activity!

So why join us to walk? Why not? With over 110 UW Medicine Teams to join, there are so many reasons, but here are a few that resonate most with us:

Support impactful research and innovation. 

As the leading cause of death for both men and women in the United States claiming some 610,000 lives a year, heart disease is a health issue that must be addressed at all stages. Every dollar raised to support the American Heart Association makes a huge difference in the development of new technology and research that will help prevent heart disease and help those with it.

“The AHA is absolutely critical to helping develop an environment where people who want to help patients with heart disease and help prevent heart disease are actually able to do that,” says Kevin OBrien, a cardiologist at UW Medical Center whose first grant as a cardiology fellow was from the AHA.

“AHA funding has a really powerful amplifying effect helping to launch and sustain people’s careers in academic medicine. They also do wonderful work in education around heart disease and helping people manage, treat, and prevent it.”

Walking is a great cardio workout and can improve cardiovascular health.

What could be better than spending the morning outside with friends, family, and colleagues enjoying—and benefiting from—a walk? It’s simply one of the best things you can do for your own heart health.

Walking at least 30 minutes a day, five days a week can reduce your risk for coronary heart disease by about 19 percent. Studies suggest your risk may reduce even more when you increase the duration or distance you walk per day.

That’s to say nothing of additional benefits including improved balance and coordination and stronger bones and muscles. Building strong walking habits on your way to a healthier heart? The Heart & Stroke Walk is a great place to start!

Show up to rep purple and gold!

Let everyone know UW Medicine is a force to be reckoned with. UW Medicine has always been an active participant in the Puget Sound Heart and Stroke Walk, but this year, let’s really make some noise.

UW Medicine has already raised $67,224 with nearly 1,000 registered participants, making it one of the top organizations participating. Can we get more than 1,200 walking this year?

Chairing this years’ Heart and Stroke Walk is Lisa Brandenberg, UW Medicine Chief Health System Officer and UW Vice President for Medical Affairs. In addition to helping lead UW Medicine, Lisa is also a great role model for a healthy lifestyle. Learn more about Lisa, her role with UW Medicine, and how she strives to support her own health and the environment by biking to work in our Staff Story spotlight.

So what are you waiting for? Grab your friends and family, and sign up. Be sure to stop by the UW Medicine tent for goodies and some husky spirit too!

Register here!

October 12 Heart and Stroke Walk Schedule

7:30 a.m. — Festival Opens

8:30 a.m. — Opening Ceremonies

9:00 a.m. — 5K & 1-Mile Walk/Run

If you are looking to learn more about heart disease, and symptoms of a heart attack or stroke, the American Heart Association’s website is home to a host of resources.