Having trouble motivating yourself to fit in your daily exercise? Walk Across Arkansas, one of the state’s largest public health initiatives, may be able to help.


For eight weeks, thousands of Arkansans form teams and log the time they spend exercising. In 2017, participants logged more than 4.1 million minutes of exercise.


By committing to exercise with a team, people are more likely to get their daily workout because there are people there to hold them accountable, explains Lisa Washburn, University of Arkansas System Division of Agriculture associate professor of health and an extension specialist.


“Social support is a powerful motivator. Working as a team to accumulate minutes of exercise can increase the likelihood one will stick with their exercise routine and ultimately improve their health. It also includes an element of accountability – no one wants to be the person to drag the team average down – and it can be more fun,” Washburn said.


Participation is simple. Grab two to 10 friends to form a team and register at www.uaex.edu/walk.


Then, from March 11 to May 5, record the amount of time you spend walking or getting any other form of exercise. Minutes can be logged online, or you can contact your local county extension agent for forms.


Registration begins this Monday, Feb. 19.


For more information about Walk Across Arkansas, visit www.uaex.edu/walk, or contact your local county extension agent.


Emily Thompson writes for the U of A System Division of Agriculture