The Surgeon General pushed for Americans to commit to walking and increasing physical exercise during his call to action speech on Wednesday, September 9.
“Walking must be made a national priority,” Surgeon General Vivek H. Murthy said.
The Surgeon General announced Step It Up!, a call to action to promote walking and maintaining and creating walkable communities for American citizens. Through walking and increased physical activity, the Surgeon General said chronic disease in Americans – so prevalent as that 1 in 2 Americans suffer from chronic illness – can significantly reduce their risk factors.
“We need to support walking where [we] live, work, learn and play,” the Surgeon General said. He encouraged small lifestyle changes for Americans, such as taking the stairs and holding walking meetings.
“Walking will be a community effort,” he said. “We must all work together. We can rebuild a culture of physical activity in America.”
Miss Wheelchair America 2005 Stands with Surgeon General
Juliette Rizzo, best known as Miss Wheelchair America in 2005, said despite her disabilities and being handicapped to a wheelchair, physical exercise has become a source of strength for her. To her and for those with disabilities, rollability is walkability.
“I may be sitting down,” Rizzo said. “But today, I proudly take a stand with the U.S. Surgeon General as part of the call to action.”
Rizzo suffers from rheumatoid arthritis, scleroderma and fibromyalgia and travels via wheelchair and has been declared morbidly obese. Despite her handicaps, however, she makes a point of getting in her exercise.
“Walkability is also for wheelchair passengers,” Rizzo said. “It’s important to make the most of your physical disabilities.”
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