Walk Your Way to Health

Want to feel stronger, more energetic and happier – well, forget the pills and potions and start walking.

Walk at Work (002)

South West Hospital and Health Service Community Nutritionist Rohan Ballon taking a Walk at Work with University of the Sunshine Coast student Jennifer Handley who is currently on placement with the health service.

South West Hospital and Health Service Community Nutritionist Rohan Ballon says Walk at Work Week from 15–19 October was a great opportunity for all South West residents to take the first steps to a healthier life.

“Walk at Work Week is designed for everyone to celebrate and encourage walking in and around the workplace. If your work involves a lot of sitting, take a few minutes out each hour or so just to get up and walk around in the workplace. You will feel re-energised.”

“If you don’t live far from work, try walking rather than taking the car. If you are too far to walk, what about parking the car a little further away than normal and walking for 10 minutes or so to get that last short distance to work.”

“Or what about getting a group of your work colleagues together and going for a short walk at lunchtime?’’

Mr Ballon says walking was suitable for people of all ages and fitness levels and could be done just about anywhere and was free.

Walking, he says, helps you to reduce stress, makes us more alert, and helps us have a healthier body and build strong relationships.

“It also helps you feel stronger, more energetic, happier and improves your overall quality and enjoyment of life.’’

Mr Ballon says a range of wearable technology such as fitness trackers and step counters could be used to measure how many steps you took in a day and how much energy you expended.

“If you don’t have access to this technology, the average person walks at a pace of about 100 steps a minute, so you can just add up your minutes of walking to work out how many steps you have taken’’

South West HHS staff throughout the region are participating in various Walk at Work activities during the week and he encouraged all members of the community to do so also.

“We hope the habits our staff and residents throughout the South West might develop during the week will go on to become a permanent part of their healthier lives.