WalkingThere are many reasons to be active, such as better sleep, lower blood pressure, improved blood sugar levels, prevention of chronic disease, lower risk of depression and anxiety, time for self-care, and increased energy. 

According to a recent report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), three-quarters of Arizona adults participated in physical activities such as running, calisthenics, golf, gardening, or walking for exercise in the past  month. Overall, the telephone survey found that 76.3% of adults exercised, ranking Arizona 19th nationally. Only four states – Colorado, Utah, Washington, and Vermont – were found to have more than 80% of adults who were physically active.

The Arizona Department of Health Services Office of Community Innovations has programs designed to help Arizonans move more. These programs focus on implementing behavior change and shifting the dialogue around nutrition and physical activity through policy, system, and environmental changes. 

These includes:

  • AZ Health Zone, helps families in low resourced communities in Arizona to be healthy and active.
  • Empower helps early care and education licensed providers empower children to grow up healthy.
  • Healthy Work Environment is helping a growing number of statewide employers create healthier work environments by enhancing wellness efforts.

Any type and amount of movement is better than no movement, and being active should be enjoyable and at an intensity that is appropriate for each person. Whether it’s walking with friends, bicycling on errands close to home, or even joining a gym where you can develop an exercise routine that works for you, I encourage you to move more in 2022!