Fitness Day highlights Huntington health fight

An editorial from The Herald-Dispatch

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. — Even before the Tri-State gained notoriety in 2008 as a region with one of the nation’s highest obesity rates, initiatives were underway to encourage people to improve their diets and exercise more regularly.

But since that time, the efforts to promote fitness have kicked into a much higher gear. 5K walks and runs are commonplace now, Huntington’s Kitchen in the downtown promotes healthier cooking, a coalition has come up with a roadmap for residents to take small steps to improve health through a 90-day challenge, and pastors in various churches have preached the benefits of eating carefully and staying active.

This week, the community has placed a full-blown emphasis on being active, with a variety of events converging to make up what partner organizations are calling Huntington’s first United Day of Fitness. Whether you are a hard-core athlete or someone who usually stands on the sidelines, you can find something suitable to do from the wide range of happenings. And don’t think you’re too old or too young; the offerings target all age groups.

Kicking off the week’s activities with opening ceremonies on Wednesday evening was the West Virginia Senior Games, presented by St. Mary’s Medical Center, which features 18 different sports for men and women age 50 and over and is a qualifying event for the National Senior Games in 2015. Competition in sports ranging from track and field to pickleball begins today and runs through Sunday morning at locations in Huntington and Barboursville. For more information about this event, visit the website www.wvseniorgames.com.

Happening tonight is the All Aboard Yoga Motive, an outdoor community yoga event hosted by Katrina Mailloux’s Brown Dog Yoga. It begins at 6 p.m. Thursday, June 19, at the Heritage Station patio at Veterans Memorial Boulevard and 11th Street. It includes an outdoor all-levels, all-ages yoga class. You can learn more online atwww.browndogyoga.com/events.

Saturday’s headline event is The Herald-Dispatch West Virginia 5K Championship, a race that was first held in 2009 as a way to raise awareness about and combat obesity. It has grown to attract several hundred participants each year…

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