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Snow Days Make us Anxious for Spring
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No doubt you have felt a little cabin fever during the past few days. Even though the moisture is needed by the farmers, the cold and icy conditions make me anxious for spring. Two weeks ago I met with the Walk KS committee for Barton County to review changes in this signature program sponsored by K-State Research and Extension the past 12 years. We came away from the meeting excited about the possibilities that lie ahead!
Walk KS is best described as an 8-week healthy lifestyle challenge. It is a team based program, set for March 16th  – May 10th,  that will help you and others lead a healthier life by being more active, making better nutrition choices, and learning positive ways to deal with stress. It is not too early for you to snag co-workers, family members, friends and neighbors to form a team of six people. The team agrees on a name and has the opportunity to choose one of three different challenges. Challenge one is to collectively walk 423 miles which is the distance across the state of Kansas. If each participant exercises a total of 2 ½ hours per week this challenge is very doable. Challenge two requires each participant to log approximately 5 hours of moderate/vigorous activity each week and collectively, the team would walk 846 miles, the distance across the state and back. Challenge three is a 1,200 mile total which is the perimeter of the state. Team members who log 6 hours of exercise each week could achieve this.
Participants log minutes of physical activity and fruits/vegetables consumed, and report these weekly to their team captain. Captains report team totals weekly. Progress of all teams in Barton County can be viewed at We are working out the details to carry out both the registration and reporting by the team captains to be done on line. The only thing that will have to be dropped off or sent to our office is the registration fee of $3 per team member and payment for optional t-shirts. This year the t-shirt colors are tropical blue and K-State purple. Prices for shirts remain at $8 with 2XL and larger sizes slightly higher.
We plan to have enrollment packets ready to go by Friday, February 14th. The week of the 17th packets will be available through the Hoisington, Ellinwood, and Great Bend Recreation Centers too. And we should have the on-line registration up and going then too.  We would like to have all teams registered by March 7th. If you have questions don’t hesitate to call me. Hopefully spring will arrive just in time for Walk KS this year!
Donna Krug is the Family & Consumer Science Agent with K-State Research and Extension – Barton County. You may reach her at: (620)793-1910 or