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331It is time to take control of your health and get walking. The southeast Michigan American Heart Association is set to host the Washtenaw County Heart Walk on May 7 at Eastern Michigan University’s Rynearson Stadium while the Detroit Heart Walk is slated for May 14 at Detroit’s West Riverfront Park.  Each walk is free, but individuals are encouraged to register. Each walk kicks off at 8 a.m.


According to the American Heart Association, every day, about 2,150 Americans die because of cardiovascular disease, making it the number one killer in the United States.  Strokes claim the lives of nearly 129,000 lives each year making it the number five killer of all Americans.  Events like the Heart Walk help raise the necessary funds to continue life-saving research and education.


“The Heart Walk is the first step that helps people improve their cardiovascular health,” said Beth Collins, vice president of the Detroit Heart Walk. “No matter how physically active a person is, they can participate and benefit from being a part of our Heart Walks,” said Collins.


“When a person begins walking at least 30 minutes a day, five days a week, they can help reduce their risk of coronary heart disease and stroke,” Collins added.


Both walks feature a timed 5K, kid’s zone, fitness activities and entertainment among other things. Dogs are welcome at the Washtenaw County Heart Walk, but keep your four-legged friends at home for the Detroit Heart Walk. Participants at each walk who raise $100 will receive a t-shirt among other incentives.


“Our goal is to improve cardiovascular health by 20 percent and reduce the number of deaths from cardiovascular diseases and stroke by 20 percent by the year 2020,” said Katie Scott, Washtenaw County Heart Walk director. “Getting people active is one way that we are able to get closer to achieving our goal.”


Erika Erickson from FOX 2 News will serve as the emcee of the Washtenaw County Heart Walk.  Taryn Asher of FOX 2 and Sandra McNeil of WWJ Newsradio 950 will co-emcee the Detroit Heart Walk.


The Washtenaw County and Detroit Heart Walks promote physical activity and heart-healthy living in a fun, family environment. For more info, visit www.washtenawheartwalk.org or www.miheartwalk.org.  For additional info about the Detroit walk contact semi.heartwalk@heart.org or call 248-936-5782.

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