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Walking to success

(L-R) Lisa Abram, patient liaison and Julie Chambers, regional business office coordinator, use their break time at Gundersen Prairie du Chien Clinic to work on the Minutes in Motion goals.

Minutes in Motion is in full swing! As Minutes in Motion celebrates its 10th anniversary this year, the goal for total minutes logged between all participants continues to increase, with 7 million minutes being the goal this year. Working to achieve this higher aim has two Gundersen employees excited to continue their tradition with Minutes in Motion.

With at least eight years under their belts, Julie Chambers, regional business office coordinator, Family Medicine, and Lisa Abram, patient liaison, Family Medicine, both at Prairie du Chien Clinic, greet Minutes in Motion with a "spring" in their steps.

Julie and Lisa find walking on their lunch break as the best way to get their physical exercise for the day. "Walking with a partner makes the experience more enjoyable. On a day when I don't feel like walking, Lisa motivates me. On days when Lisa doesn't feel like exercising, I do the same for her," says Julie.

You also don't have to be athletic to participate. Just getting up and moving for 30 minutes a day counts as physical activity. "One of the biggest takeaways for me is having the motivation to exercise daily. Being signed-up for Minutes in Motion and having a partner to walk with holds both of us accountable," says Lisa. "On top of that, it gave me a good reason to get outside and overall made me feel better and have more energy."

Julie and Lisa also use DVDs to help them stay active. Lisa finds the Biggest Loser DVD series as a good way to increase her cardio. Julie uses the WinningWeighs® DVD from a few years ago as part of her daily minutes.

An important part of Minutes in Motion is that you do not have to rebuild your entire day to get in 30 minutes of physical activity. "Even if you don't think 10 minutes is enough time for a little bit of exercise, if you do this three times a day, you already have your daily minutes logged," says Julie. "Climb the stairs a few times or walk around the building instead of sitting in the break room."

Even on days where weather was less than ideal, Julie and Lisa would find a way to exercise. Lisa notes, "While sometimes it can be difficult to think of a place to walk indoors, Julie and I would go walking at the mall in town, back and forth if the weather was bad outside."

Julie and Lisa encourage participants to keep up with the challenge. "Even if one day or week, you don't meet your goal for physical activity, don't let that hinder you," says Julie. "You can make up for it the next week. Any amount of exercise is positive."

For more information, call Gundersen Community & Preventive Care Services at (608) 775-4717 or email wellness@gundersenhealth.org.