What is “America on the Move?”

America on the Move is a national program set up to help individuals and communities make some simple changes to improve health across the United States. By focusing on individuals and communities, America on the Move works to support healthy eating and active living habits.

The goal of America on the Move in Teller County is to increase the number of residents who take part in moderate physical activity at least five days per week. Moderate physical activities make you breathe a little harder than normal; things such as carrying light loads, walking briskly, or gardening.

The Challenge

The eating and physical activity patterns of most Americans have made us the most overweight nation in the world.

Ø More than 60% of Americans do not get at least 30 minutes of physical activity a day.

Ø 25% of American adults are not physically active at all.

Ø More than 120 million Americans - 64.5% of the adult population - are overweight; nearly 59 million, or 31%, are obese.

Ø The average American adult gains 1-3 pounds each year; some people gain more.

Ø In Colorado, 34% of adults are overweight or obese.

Ø Approximately 30% of sixth-graders in Teller County are overweight or obese.

How Can I Change?

By walking a little more (2000 more steps) and eating a little less (100 fewer calories) each day, you can prevent weight gain. The ideas on the calendars in this packet will help you make these easy changes and start to make a big difference in your life and, eventually, in your community. Once your friends and family see how fun and easy it can be to change, maybe they'll join you!

So How Do I Get Started?

Getting started toward your goals is as easy as taking a few steps:

Step 1 Fill out the enclosed contact information and Healthy Lifestyle and follow the directions below.

Step 2 Wear your step counter for three days in a row, with at least one of those days being a Saturday or Sunday (for example, wear it Thursday, Friday, Saturday). Put your step counter on first thing in the morning, do your normal activities throughout the day, and at the end of the day, write down the number of steps you took.

Step 3 After three days, add up the total number of steps you have taken and divide by three. This is your "baseline" number of steps. This chart can help you figure out your baseline:

Day

Steps

1

2

3

TOTAL

Divide by 3

= Baseline

Step 4 Set your own "steps" goal. The idea is to increase your steps so that by the end of ten weeks you are taking more steps per day than you were when you started. For example, if your baseline is 1000 steps per day and you decide you want to increase your daily steps by 2000, by the end of ten weeks you would be taking 3000 steps per day. If you can increase your steps and decrease your daily calorie intake by 100 calories, you can maintain your current weight. More steps and even fewer calories could actually help you lose weight.

Step 5 Start walking!

Step 6 Write down your steps every day for ten weeks and turn your steps calendar in to Teller County Public Health. We will send you a post card near the end of your ten weeks to remind you to send or bring in your steps log. It is important that we get your log back so we can decide if we can continue to offer the step counters at the discounted price of $5.00.

That's all there is to it! Writing down your steps every day helps you focus on taking more steps and keeps you thinking about ways to take more steps.

But wait...2000 steps sounds like a lot! It really isn't. You can take 2000 steps by adding just 15 to 20 extra minutes of walking throughout your day (it doesn't even have to all be at the same time). 2000 steps is GREAT, but the number of steps is less important than knowing that you are moving a little more today than yesterday, and a little more this week than last. Some things you can do to add more steps to your day include:

  • Take the stairs instead of the elevator when possible.
  • Walk to the break area or restroom farthest from your office.
  • Park in a spot farther from the front door of the store instead of driving around the parking lot looking for the closest spot.
  • Go for a walk with the kids, the dog or your spouse (or all three!).

And what about those 100 calories that I'm not supposed to eat? Again, simple things like not drinking one can of soda or having fresh fruit instead of syrup on your waffles or pancakes can help with this. There are more ideas for cutting calories on the calendars that you will be using to track your steps.

Teller County Public Health will also contact you a few times over the next year to see if you're still using your step counter, still keeping track of your steps, and if this program has helped you build your own "healthy lifestyle."

To learn more about America on the Move, log on to http://www.americaonthemove.org/. There are more ideas for adding steps, reducing calories, and meeting your goals!

If you have questions or if you would like more information on our Health Behavior Change Program, call Teller County Public Health at 719/687-6416.

Add 2,000 Steps!

It's not just what we eat that's important, but how we use the calories we consume. As long as you're
active enough to balance the calories you eat with the calories you burn in physical activity, you can enjoy
an occasional treat and still avoid weight gain.
By pledging to walk an extra mile (equivalent to 2000 steps) and reduce 100 calories for one day you'll see how
easy it is to achieve the energy balance that can stop weight gain.

Small changes in your daily activity will quickly add up to 2000 extra steps or more!