WALK Newsletter #14 – December 15th, 2021

W – Wow: WAT! 25 Challenge Participation Update

 Tis the season for believin’! This is the time of year when we often spend time focusing on faith and reflecting on beliefs. In the big holiday picture, physical activity may seem low on the list of priorities. But there is no doubt that wellness and being well is an underlying component of most of our dearly held values. Many of our best intentions are related to ensuring the well-being of ourselves and those we love. Physical activity contributes to wellness in so many ways. Walk Across Texas! is a fantastic way to practice healthy habits that are integral to wellbeing. We, in Extension, genuinely believe in the power of knowledge and action for better living. As we complete this Walk Across Texas! 25th Year Anniversary Challenge, we want to say that we believe in the power of healthy habits. Most importantly, we believe in YOU and your ability to create and maintain a healthy and active lifestyle!

We also believe that we can make improvements to the WAT! program to continue to enhance effectiveness. Your feedback helps us to do just that! We hope you will take a minute or two to complete the Qualtrics survey below to help us out! And look at that… if you complete the survey, you will be eligible for the last prize drawing! Believe it! 

One more thing we believe in…stats! Adding up the numbers to see where we stand…or at least where we are right now as we continue our walks for healthy lifestyles:

In the WAT! Adult program: 4,661 participants; 789 teams; 104 leagues created; 103 counties in Texas have participated with 756,030.89 miles reported!

In the WAT! Youth program: 4,921 participants; 123 teams; 25 leagues created; 37 counties in Texas have participated with 78,668.24 miles reported!

What an unbelievable (but, actually… believable…because you are awesome) accomplishment! 

See below for team leaderboards sorted by start dates!

Congratulations to the winners of the random drawing of those who entered mileage during the WAT! 25 Challenge:

WAT! Adult – Mini Challenge #13 Winners

County 

Participant

Team Name

McLennan

Frank G.

Highlander Hikers

Milam

Rebecca B.

Social Steppers

Brown

Michelle E.

KBB Walkers

Bowie

Sheri B.

Rolling Stones

McLennan

Doug M.

DeCordova

Waller

Antoinette W.

AA Kickin’ up Dust Once Again

Bell

Grace G.-M.

BECSorange

Montgomery

Gina A.

Texas Chicas

Bowie

Nancy S.

Rolling Stones

Bowie

Sushil S.

Holie Walk-a-molies

And congratulations to the winners of the raffle drawing for the wrap up mini challenge this past week:

WAT! Adult – Wrap Up #6 Winners

County

Participant

Team Name

Galveston

Alex C.

Undefeetable

Deaf Smith

Berlinda M.

Walk the Mile

Denton

Pete K.

Fall Walkers

Harris

Patty M.

HARTA Team #1

San Patricio

Alyssia C.

Nacho Taco Sisters

All Winners – be on the lookout for an email about how to claim your prize! 

Be sure to check out our previous newsletters to see if you or a team member have won: https://walkacrosstexas.org/news

A - Action: Mini Challenge #14

We are nearing the end of our weekly mini challenges for the WAT! 25 Challenge. We’ve had a blast offering prizes over the past few months, but this will be our last one! In celebration of our 25th year anniversary we will be selecting 25 winners!

WAT! Adult – Mini Challenge #14: We want to know what you thought about the WAT! 25 Challenge. Our fourteenth mini challenge is all about requesting feedback! All entries will be included in a drawing for a $10 dollar gift card to Amazon. To be eligible for the drawing, participants must be registered in the WAT! 25 Challenge – WAT! Adult program. 

Here is the link to submit: WAT! 25 Challenge – Mini Challenge #14

The submission must be received by Friday, December 31st by 11:59 PM to be entered. We will announce the winners in the final WAT! 25 Challenge WALK newsletter on January 12th, 2022.   

WAT! Youth – December Mini Challenge: This is our last monthly recognition called the Texas Youth on the Moveawards. To enter for the month of December, WAT! Youth teams must log mileage from December 1st through December 31st. Prizes will be awarded in three categories: Schools, Youth Organizations and Small Group teams (20 team members or less). Team captains will receive an Amazon gift card to use in support of their youth program through a random drawing. The final round of winners will be recognized in the final WAT! 25 Challenge newsletter on January 12th, 2022. Teams must register to join the WAT! 25 Challenge – WAT! Youth program, and log mileage, by Friday, December 31st by 11:59 PM to be entered.

L – Learn

There are so many wonderful and believable benefits of walking. We get especially excited about continuing our walking journey when we read things like these “Top Health Benefits of Walking” from America Walks, especially Number 4:

1. Walking is good for your mind
Walking can help in the treatment of both anxiety and depression (especially depression). It can improve self-esteem and happiness. Walking outdoors may provide additional benefits. 

2. Walking in green space can improve sleep 
Regular walking in green space may improve both sleep quality and quantity and reduce episodes of insomnia. 

3. Walking can help stem the effects of arthritis
 Even limited walking (<10 minutes/week) can help to prevent onset of physical disability due to arthritis. 

4. Participating in walking groups can help improve health
 There is evidence of wide-ranging health benefits for participating in regular walking groups including improvements in blood pressure, resting heart rate, BMI, blood cholesterol, VO2 Max, and depression scores. Walking in groups increases safety and adherence to walking programs, increasing effectiveness.

Learn more about the Health Benefits of Walking from America Walks, and take some time to consider your reason for walking? What’s your why?

Keep motivated – Write down your “why” and post it on your mirror, refrigerator, in your car, or at your desk to remind yourself of why you’re getting and staying physically active every day. Believe in yourself! 

K – Keep on Believing!

Don’t stop believing! Hmmm... that sounds so much like a rock music anthem! Please do not forget the power you have when you believe in your own ability to take action to improve your health and well-being. It does not require complicated regimens, unrealistic cures, or holiday miracles. All you really need is knowledge, intention, and action. You can do it! Thank you for walking with us through this anniversary journey! Hopefully, you are marking your own wellness anniversaries!

In this section, we usually highlight Extension programs you can explore. There are so many! Since this is one of the last email newsletters you will receive for this challenge, we want to encourage you to reach out to your local county Extension office to see what they have to offer and the check out our AgriLife Learn online programs to see if there is something there you can use to contribute to your well-being!

Below are some of the “leaderboards” for the WAT! 25 Challenge. They are sorted by start date and mileage. Fun fact: out of the 789 teams in the WAT! 25 Challenge, the most popular start dates were September 15 with 132 teams; September 21 with 112 teams; and September 27 with 81 teams. And the fun keeps going and going: the most recent team signed up December 13th, just 2 days before these stats were pulled. We know there will be more teams starting in 2022. The wonderful thing about WAT! is that it is ready when you are!

 Leaderboards (sorted by start date)

Top WAT! Youth Teams:

 County

Start Date

Team Name

Total Participants

Total Miles

Sterling

9/3/2021

Sterling 5th

17

737.05

Panola

9/5/2021

Still Waters 4-H Club

3

46.69

Houston

9/7/2021

Latexo Fourth Green

33

955

Anderson

9/20/2021

Morrison-2nd Gr.

21

630

Madison

9/27/2021

Strawther's Strutters

13

590

Cameron

9/29/2021

5th Purple Coyotes

19

881.8

Johnson

9/30/2021

Community 4-H Club Youth

7

171.2

Val Verde

10/4/2021

Chavira

460

994

Milam

10/18/2021

1st Grade

112

898

Cherokee

10/22/2021

Essary's Walkers

17

736.89

Concho

10/25/2021

Paint Rock 1st and 2nd

28

112

Smith

11/8/2021

ESC

7

674

Travis

11/9/2021

AJA Super Steppers

16

329

Top WAT! Adult Teams:

County

Team Name

Start Date

Total Miles

Jones

Booking it Across Texas

9/1/2021

1854.07

Potter

Legs Miserable

9/3/2021

1582.58

Panola

Rotary Club of Carthage Too

9/5/2021

1218.44

Brazos

Steppers 

9/6/2021

1759.19

Hidalgo

Gel Runners

9/7/2021

1824.33

Nueces

Hometown Walkers

9/8/2021

3109.99

Deaf Smith

Boom Chaka Laka

9/9/2021

1715.45

Montgomery

Red Hot Chili Steppers

9/10/2021

2003.89

Cherokee

RhsEagleCrew

9/11/2021

864.65

Hood

Lawless

9/13/2021

2060.93

Hopkins

Max's Marvels

9/14/2021

1387.44

Denton

Fall Walkers

9/15/2021

3465.9

Brazos

The Motley Crew

9/16/2021

2888.82

Wise

Young and the Restless

9/17/2021

2099.85

Lampasas

Chisholm Trail Chorus Trekkers

9/18/2021

1796.74

Travis

Taking Life in Stride

9/19/2021

2874.41

Waller

MAXIMUM EFFORT

9/20/2021

3496.41

Coryell

The Superheroes

9/21/2021

1835.78

Montgomery

Pavement Punishers

9/22/2021

2033.37

Navarro

The Counties Best!

9/23/2021

1483.38

McLennan

Go Grad School Gals

9/24/2021

872.77

Grayson

Tigers

9/25/2021

2688.6

Galveston

Fast Not Furious

9/26/2021

2307.32

Montgomery

Hoofin' it to Hilltop

9/27/2021

2593.5

Jack

Shake, Rattle & Stroll

9/28/2021

586.73

Cameron

Eagles

9/29/2021

1734.41

Cameron

High School Cru

9/30/2021

2355.33

Victoria

Texas Roses

10/1/2021

8098.38

McLennan

Lone Arrangers 

10/3/2021

1537.95

Deaf Smith

School of Walk

10/4/2021

2046.2

Anderson

Step It Up

10/5/2021

933.53

Cherokee

Wick 

10/7/2021

158.9

Hidalgo

Master Clothing Volunteers

10/13/2021

1585.9

Cherokee

The Millers

10/14/2021

86

Van Zandt

VZCMG

10/16/2021

1482.1

Milam

The Walkie Talkies

10/18/2021

2016.3

Milam

ToonSquadz

10/19/2021

7.5

Gregg

All About That Pace

10/20/2021

930.6

Coryell

Senior Power

11/1/2021

698.78

Nueces

Castle Manor Kings and Queens

11/2/2021

1417.47

Harris

Texas two steppers 

11/8/2021

943.55

Collin

Faith and Fitness 8

11/13/2021

658.36

Denton

Denton County Aggie Moms

11/15/2021

345.23

Montgomery

Legacy Center

11/29/2021

1007.66

Coryell

sassy striders

11/29/2021

52.5

Nueces

Sole Mates

12/1/2021

689.91

*Non-Texas

Ms. Akin's Class

12/2/2021

56

Cameron

Eagles

12/6/2021

392.11

Cameron

Witness The Fitness

12/13/2021

29.88

Top WAT Adult Walkers:

County

Start Date

Name

Team

Miles

Jones

9/1/2021

Zeke C.

Wacky Walkers 

506.7

Potter

9/3/2021

Jan D.

Legs Miserable

468

Panola

9/5/2021

Bill M.

Rotary Club of Carthage Too

442.75

Brazos

9/6/2021

Dorothy R.

L Cool Seniors

396

Hidalgo

9/7/2021

Victoria  G.

Gel Runners

305.39

Nueces

9/8/2021

Julio T.

Team Godzilla 

798.94

Deaf Smith

9/9/2021

Ida S. H.

Boom Chaka Laka

341.27

Montgomery

9/10/2021

Paul B.

Red Hot Chili Steppers

427

Cherokee

9/11/2021

Leann H.

RhsEagleCrew

256.11

Gillespie

9/13/2021

Darrell  B.

DragonDeathForce2000X

561.84

Wise

9/14/2021

David L.

FBC Decatur Texas

494.3

Brazos

9/15/2021

Jake G.

Wandering Wildlanders

1039.3

Brazos

9/16/2021

Monty D.

The Motley Crew

680.12

Coryell

9/17/2021

Patricia K.

Pawsitive Cattitude WLE

690.95

Lampasas

9/18/2021

Wendy T.

Chisholm Trail Chorus Trekkers

362.75

Austin

9/19/2021

Katy H.

Walkaholics

1112.89

Bowie

9/20/2021

Brett M.

The Walking Tread

874.63

Coryell

9/21/2021

Mary Kay R.

The Superheroes

510.96

Bell

9/22/2021

Stephanie  H.

BECSorange

460.67

Navarro

9/23/2021

RosaElla  W.

The Counties Best!

385

McLennan

9/24/2021

Dana M.

Go Grad School Gals

223.9

Grayson

9/25/2021

Angie D.

Tigers

905.99

Galveston

9/26/2021

Marishika W.

Charlie's Ankles 

832.97

Montgomery

9/27/2021

Bowman C.

Hoofin' it to Hilltop

1178

Dallas

9/28/2021

David M.

The Walkers 2021

273.2

Cameron

9/29/2021

Robert R.

Eagles

628.87

Cameron

9/30/2021

Esmeralda  R.

High School Cru

416

Victoria

10/1/2021

Donna L.

Texas Roses

7070.53

McLennan

10/3/2021

Brian S.

Lone Arrangers 

327.59

Deaf Smith

10/4/2021

Michael  B.

School of Walk

613

Anderson

10/5/2021

Frances S.

Step It Up

315.34

Cherokee

10/7/2021

Heather B.

Wick 

156.4

Hidalgo

10/13/21

Veronica R.

Master Clothing Volunteers

583

Cherokee

10/14/21

Mandy M.

The Millers

86

Van Zandt

10/16/21

Anna H.

Hockaday Family

421.48

Milam

10/19/21

Rodricus  F.

ToonSquadz

5

Gregg

10/20/21

Brittany C.

All About That Pace

149.75

Coryell

11/1/21

Andrea W.

Senior Power

436

Nueces

11/2/21

Cheryl C.

Castle Manor Kings & Queens

999.99

Harris

11/8/21

Peggy Z.

Texas two steppers 

248.47

Collin

11/13/21

Brenda H.

Faith and Fitness 8

213.5

Denton

11/15/21

Kelli A.

Denton County Aggie Moms

87.2

Montgomery

11/29/21

Sonia R.

Legacy Center 

213.67

Nueces

12/1/21

Kathy  L.

Sole Mates

160

*Non-Texas

12/2/21

Kayla A.

Ms. Akin's Class

56

Cameron

12/6/21

Robert R.

Eagles

137.79

Cameron

12/13/21

Dawn C.

Witness The Fitness

5.8

We hope you have the happiest, healthiest, hope-filled...and yes, believable... holiday season!

WALK Newsletter #13 – December 8th, 2021
WALK Newsletter #15 – January 12th, 2022

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