WALK Newsletter #6 – October 20th, 2021

W – Wow: WAT! 25 Challenge Participation Update

We are one more week into the #WAT25 journey! Some in our WAT! 25 Challenge may be close to wrapping up and others are just beginning. Often when we start a new project, we are super excited to begin. The first few weeks are new and different, but then as time passes other things take priority and we get distracted or discouraged. At whatever point you are, reflecting on your path so far can be helpful. Here are some questions to contemplate regarding your current WAT! experience…

Maybe think about these questions the next time that you are walking: 

  • What are some of the benefits you have noticed?
  • What are some of the obstacles you have encountered? How have you addressed those?
  • As you look back at your daily WAT! entries, what patterns are you noticing? 
  • You joined the WAT! 25 Challenge because you wanted something to change, whether it was increasing your physical activity, preparing for a big event, or just connecting with friends or family. Thinking about those things, where are you on that journey of change? What has changed about how you think about not only WAT, but your physical health in general?

Regardless of when your team started the eight-week #WAT25 journey, you will experience a myriad of feelings during your involvement; everywhere from “this doesn’t make any sense” to “this is the best thing ever!” Either way, you can be confident that WAT! is scientifically based, and research shows that it works! But, like any health-related program, your outcomes are related to your input. Even small steps can add up to make a significant difference. 

Speaking of input and adding up, for the WAT! 25 Challenge, the WAT! Adult program has 4,417 participants756 teams98 counties, 96 leagues and a whopping 344,006.87 miles collectively! The WAT! Youth program has 2,901 participants89 teams24 counties20 leagues, and 20,537.83 miles! And that, my friends, is really a WOW!

Congrats to the winners of the random drawing from those who entered at least 7.5 miles...

WAT! Adult – Mini Challenge #5 Winners


Team Name

Week Mileage

Yolanda G.

Walk Across Texas Team 1


Michael G.

The Slackers


Brandy W.

Washington Walkers


Ashley F.

Walk on Faith


Mike L.



Judy J.

Max's Marvels


Catherine H.

Team Evelyn


Sandi B.

Waco Walking Group


Nora D.

Texas Walkers


Dana K.



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

Overall, there were 2,161 participants who recorded 7.5 miles or above! Of those who have entered mileage in the WAT! Adult program, over 54% of the WAT! 25 Challenge participants had over 150 minutes of physical activity...kudos to everyone who moved your way this past week! Didn’t make it this time? That’s okay, this week is a fresh start to improve! 

 A - Action: Mini Challenge #6

 WAT! Adult – Mini Challenge #6: For our sixth mini-challenge, we are going to make this week our best week yet! Remember, the WAT! Adult program is a marathon, not a sprint. If you feel distracted or discouraged from not meeting your weekly goals, you can recover and start again!

To be eligible this week, all you must do is do better than last week! How will we know? We will look at mileage entered this upcoming week: Wednesday, October 20th – Tuesday, October 26th, 2021. 

If you improve your mileage from the previous week: Wednesday, October 13th – Tuesday, October 19th, you will be entered into the raffle. In the next newsletter, we will share the 10 randomly selected winners of a $10 dollar gift card to Amazon. Mileage must be submitted by Tuesday October 26th by 11:59 PM to be entered!

WAT! Youth – October Mini Challenge: Welcome to the second round of the monthly recognition called the Texas Youth on the Move awards. To enter for the month of October, WAT! Youth teams must log mileage from October 1st through October 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 second round of winners will be recognized in the Wednesday, November 3rd newsletter. Teams must register to join the WAT! 25 Challenge – WAT! Youth program, and log mileage, by Sunday, October 31st by 11:59 PM to be entered.

 L – Learn: Staying Motivated

Motivation is what gets you started. Habit is what keeps you going.” – Jim Ryun, first high school athlete to run a sub-4:00 mile

 “Making exercise an enjoyable part of your everyday life may be easier than you think.” -HelpGuideOrg International  

 Whether you’re just getting started or you’re already half-way across Texas on your physical activity journey, sometimes it can be hard to stay motivated and stick to a healthy and active lifestyle. There are so many great reasons to be active but making it a HABIT – that takes the right mindset and a smart approach. Learn more: How to Start Exercising and Stick to It

WAT! Youth Tip: Working with schools? Here are some fun student rewards that do not cost much and recognize students for being more active:

  • Free Homework Pass for a Day/Subject
  • Coach for the Day
  • Lunch with Teacher/Coach
  • Campus Shout-Out Recognition
  • Extended Recess for a Day/Week
  • Shoes off in Classroom for a Day

 K – Keep finding your path!

 In these messages, we want to share with you a few of our many programs in Extension that help Texans thrive! WAT! walkers take many paths in the journey of thriving health. One path we would love you to know about is the “Path to the Plate.” In Extension terms, Path to the Plate is the connection between agriculture and health. We aim to provide an unbiased examination of agriculture, the food we eat, and the connection to our health; to deliver correct, research-based information via a variety of methods. We want to educate consumers so they can make informed decisions when it comes to agriculture and their health. Contact your local Extension office with questions or to request a presentation about PTTP or for a plethora of articles and resources, check out the website: https://pathtotheplate.tamu.edu/

Metaphorically, paths are the choices we make that get us where we are going. We are glad you have made the choice to participate in #WAT25 and have joined us on this path to wellness!

Until next week...

WALK Newsletter #5 – October 13th, 2021
WALK Newsletter #7 – October 27th, 2021

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