50 Million Step Challenge a success

By Bunny Hayes, Health Club Supervisor and Wellness Coach Trainer for ReDiscover Mental Health in Lee’s Summit, Mo.

THE CHALLENGE: Walk 50 Million steps in 3 months, starting Aug. 1, and ending Nov. 1.

The seven Kansas City metro community mental health centers (CMHC) exceeded their 50 Million Step goal, together walking 58.4 million steps, totaling 29,236 miles. This year’s 50 Million Step Challenge was successful at promoting more active lives for our consumers and staff. Below are some experiences from the challenge.

ReDiscover identified consumers who would be mentors to their peers along with participating in the Metro wide challenge. They held walking times, helped input the steps in the tracker(s) and motivated/cheered other consumers on. We called them our Gladiators.

  • “I went through 3 pairs of shoes, had lots of blisters and my legs hurt so bad at the end of some days I had to put them up, but I kept walking. I’d do it again and I’ll keep walking. It was fun to show my steps and have everybody ask me how far I had gone.”
  • “It was an excellent experience. I mean it really, being able to notice the fortitude of people. It was nice to set an example for other people. It was a good opportunity to get out and lead and show what you can do for others. I found out that I could push myself hard and some others could too. It was a good opportunity just to get out, not only as a good exercise as a little socializing. It was definitely a challenge and a goal for me was to strive to do good.”
  • “When I didn’t want to walk and I was thinking of excuses. I did it, because I didn’t want to let the others down.”

Consumers from Truman Medical Centers, Behavioral Health, New Frontier’s program:

  • “It was fun sharing this experience together with so many people all motivated and competitive.”
  • “I had to miss some of the walk due to medical reasons but I want to walk again.”
  • “I had a great time walking in the walking challenge. It gave me a great deal of courage. It increased my strength and gave me inspiration and motivation to finish in 3 months.”
  • “It made my walking consistent from morning to evening on a daily basis.”

Swope Health Services

  • “I feel good about myself walking regularly.” ~Grace N. Okonta, MA, HS-BCP/QMHP; Supervisor, Adult CPRP-Swope Health Services,
  • “This was an awesome experience for our consumers to put into action wellness goals and receive support from our agency as a whole to get this done.”

What I will remember from the challenge is when I told one of our consumers I would be sad when we all stopped walking together, they responded, “I’ll help you remember to.” In that interaction I knew our challenge had succeeded at far more than just achieving our steps.

There will be a celebration held at the Linwood YMCA on Friday, Nov. 21, 2014, at 10 a.m. All are welcome to celebrate another successful walking challenge with us.



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HCF's Local Health Buzz Blog aims to discuss health and health policy issues that impact the uninsured and underserved in our service area. To submit a blog, please contact HCF Communications Officers, Jennifer Sykes, at jsykes@hcfgkc.org.



About Bridget's Blog

Bridget McCandless

Bridget McCandless, MD, MBA, FACP, HCF President/CEO

Bridget McCandless is the President/CEO of the Health Care Foundation of Greater Kansas City and is a Board Certified Internal Medicine Specialist with an interest in chronic disease management and poverty medicine. She shares her thoughts and perspectives on health and policy issues that impact the health of the community as a whole.

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