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Join the Million Mile City Challenge

By Amy Millhorn Leonard • Jun 27, 2017 at 4:30 PM

Do you walk? Do you run, hike, kayak or play tennis? If not, now is a great time to start.

You probably mow the lawn, wash your car or do housework, right?

Did you know that any physical activity can be counted toward Healthy Kingsport’s Million Mile City Challenge?

The Million Mile City Challenge was issued on Nov. 5, 2016, and continues through Oct. 30, 2017, in an attempt for Kingsport to become only “the second city in the United States and the first city in Tennessee to complete the challenge,” said Johanna Montgomery, associate director of Healthy Kingsport.

“This is a community-wide effort working to get our community to become more physically active by finding their 150,” she explained. “The 150 represents 150 minutes a week for 22 minutes a day to be active.”

More than 890 million steps have been logged by more than 1,300 participants in the Million Mile City Challenge. That is equivalent to almost two trips to the moon and over 40 million calories burned.

It is easy to participate. Online, simply go to www.healthykingsport.org, click on the Million Mile Challenge banner, register, set your step goal and start tracking your physical activity. Almost any activity can be converted to steps on the easy-to-use tracker. A mile is made up of approximately 2,000 steps. If you use a Fitbit, mobile phone app or other tracking device you can follow the directions to upload that information.

Would you like to challenge your family, friends or co-workers to participate? You can do that by setting up your own team. Teams have already been set up by different employers as well as community organizations.

And speaking of challenges...

Healthy Kingsport and Wellmont are issuing a Party Across America Challenge! This challenge will be based on the number of steps taken. Participants will be able to tour party cities from all across America ending with Fun Fest in Kingsport. The individual with the most steps at the end of the competition will receive a special Fun Fest prize - a ride in a hot air balloon at Breakfast with the Balloons for them plus one! The top five individuals will receive a Healthy Living prize basket comprised of great items from community partners. All of the participants who reach the daily goal of 10,000 steps each day will be invited to a celebration held at Healthy Kingsport’s hospitality tent at Taste of the Tri-Cities on Saturday, July 22.

Are you participating in a local charity race or walk like Crazy 8s Race on July 15 or the Haunted Half Marathon in October? Those steps count as well. Healthy Kingsport has been selected as one of the charity recipients for Crazy 8s Race to Raise proceeds this year. This is the second year that Healthy Kingsport will train and pay the entry fee with help from community sponsors for a group of at risk kids to participate in the race. Their training theme is “start together, finish together.” Want to train for the Crazy 8s Race? Free training for racers is provided starting at the Dobyns-Bennett High School parking lot from 3:45 to 5 p.m. most Wednesdays and Fridays from now until the race.

All ages are invited to participate in Healthy Kingsport’s Walk and Roll events which usually happen from 5:30 to 7 p.m. on the second Friday of the month from now through October. The next one will be held July 7. You can walk a mile in Downtown Kingsport or bicycle five miles on the Greenbelt and downtown. Helmets are required for all bike riders.

A new event called “Saturdays with the Chef,” brought to the community by the City of Kingsport in partnership with Healthy Kingsport, Visit Kingsport and Food City, happens every Saturday in June and July at the Kingsport Farmers Market. Starting at 9 a.m., a guest chef will demonstrate a healthy-option meal preparation featuring items from the Farmers Market. There will be some free samples to taste.

For more information about Healthy Kingsport and the Million Mile City Challenge, call 423-392-8837 or visit the website. You can also follow them on Facebook.

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