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TMH Living Well: Walk or run for a good cause, get healthy doing it

The Memorial Hospital Glow Run gets moving Oct. 8

The Memorial Hospital

If you go

Third annual TMH Glow Run 5K

6:45 p.m. Oct. 8

Colorado Northwestern Community College, 2801 Ninth St.

— Registration starts at 5:30 p.m. and the course loops around CNCC and The Memorial Hospital. Entry is $25 for adults, $15 for students and $10 for Girls on the Run participants. T-shirts are $10 apiece. Costumes and glow sticks are encouraged, and the race will be followed by music, food and other activities. For more information, call 970-824-9411 or visit thememorialhospital.com/community.

We have all heard the great benefits of exercise: lowered cholesterol, better sleep, less food cravings, lighter moods and of course, weight loss. Add reduced risk of certain cancers to that list. If you know a cancer survivor or are one yourself, consider joining forces with other community members to get some exercise and give money to help fight cancer in Moffat County and support people with other health issues by attending the annual TMH Glow Run next week.

If you go

Third annual TMH Glow Run 5K

6:45 p.m. Oct. 8

Colorado Northwestern Community College, 2801 Ninth St.

— Registration starts at 5:30 p.m. and the course loops around CNCC and The Memorial Hospital. Entry is $25 for adults, $15 for students and $10 for Girls on the Run participants. T-shirts are $10 apiece. Costumes and glow sticks are encouraged, and the race will be followed by music, food and other activities. For more information, call 970-824-9411 or visit thememorialhospital.com/community.

According to the National Cancer Institute, the relationship between breast cancer incidence and exercise has been extensively studied, with results showing that women who are physically active have a lower risk of breast cancer. Others say exercising regularly can reduce your risk for colon, breast and uterine cancers by 20 percent.

To get the most protection, studies suggest exercising 30 to 60 minutes a day at moderate or high intensity. How does it work? Scientists say exercise might lower hormone levels, and therefore lower risk of hormone-based cancers. It also improves immunity and lowers insulin levels, which could also play in to lessen cancer risk.

“A brisk walk is one of the best cardiovascular exercises, and it’s easy to do,” said Zack Johnson, MSPT, Manager of the Physical Therapy Department at The Memorial Hospital.

A daily speedy, 30-minute walk has been proven to have several benefits besides staving off cancer. The most obvious is weight loss and toning your legs, buttocks and torso. It also strengthens your heart by lowering bad cholesterol (LDL) levels and raising good cholesterol (HDL) levels.

If that’s not enough, walk for your brain! People who walk at least six miles a week stave off brain shrinkage related to dementia and memory loss. It’s a proven fact that regular exercise lowers mild to moderate depression and anxiety. When you exercise, your body releases “feel-good” neurotransmitters into your blood stream, bringing on positive feelings and a sense of peace.

It seems a bit counterintuitive to think that exercising — which takes energy — would give us more energy. Yet it’s true. If you’ve ever felt too tired to work out but made yourself do it anyway, you know that somewhere along the way you start feeling better.

Johnson is also a fan of resistance training to keep your body strong and balanced. Resistance training involves using your own body as a weight or using lighter weights while you exercise. It can be as basic as standard push-ups, sit-ups and wall squats or as fancy as Pilates or yoga.

“There is leading research that we gain great benefits from resistance training, along with stretching and cardiovascular exercises,” Johnson said.

Grab a glow stick, a costume and your running shoes and head to TMH for the third annual 5k Glow Run around the hospital and Colorado Northwestern Community College campuses. There will be prizes for best costumes and a post-event celebration. Proceeds support Moffat County Cancer Society and The Memorial Hospital Foundation. Who knows, it could be the start of a new, healthy habit to reduce your risk of cancer.

For more information or to register, visit thememorialhospital.com/communitythememorialhospital.com/community..thememorialhospital.com/community.


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