Celebrating Walktober in Columbia

September 29, 2022

Did you know that walking is our official state exercise in Maryland? 

At CA, we ♥️ to celebrate Walktober, which is a statewide initiative to promote walking and all of its health and wellbeing benefits.

Thanks to our friends at the Howard County Local Health Improvement Coalition (HCLHIC), who are leading the effort to get people of all abilities to “Walk, roll, ride, MOVE!” this month, we’ve got a full schedule of fun and accessible events to look forward toThis is one of the best times of year to remember and appreciate how much beautiful space we have in our area, and to take full advantage.


But first, why walk?

According to the American Heart Association, walking has the lowest dropout rate of any physical activity. It’s the perfect, low-impact way to increase stamina and energy while decreasing stress.

From cancer to chronic conditions and diabetes, just 20 minutes a day can lower your risk of disease. It can help ease aching muscles and back pain, and prevent high blood pressure, cholesterol, and other heart issues. And that’s just the physical! Breathing in fresh air and getting vitamin D is a known mood-booster.

Being aware of your form while walking helps strengthen your core and improve posture, so we consulted our CA trainers for their best tips. By the way, CA personal trainer Darrell Gough says that walking is the perfect exercise snack! You can learn more here. 😉


Howard Community College 5K Challenge Race

CA’s team had a blast helping raise funds for student scholarships at Howard Community College’s 5K Challenge Race! We even finished first in the overall team competition.

Walk with a Doc

We are SO excited to kick off the first Columbia Walk with a Doc as part of Walktober. 

“This free monthly community program fosters health education, social connection and movement outdoors in nature,” says Tavia Patusky, CA Wellness and Fitness Director. “The CA Medical Advisory Board and CA Wellness & Fitness team can’t wait to connect and move with Columbia.”

Every third Saturday of the month, participants will learn about a current health topic from a healthcare professional, then spend the rest of the hour enjoying a healthy walk and fun conversation along Lake Kittamaqundi. The first event will take place Saturday, October 15 from 9-11am, where Dr. Jyothi Rao, MD will be leading the conversation on sleep. Participants will meet at the People Tree. Sign up here.


Walktober Invitational Theme Show: The Journey Within

In recognition of Walktober, local artists are showcasing art inspired by the theme “the journey through” at the Columbia Art Center. Come enjoy the theme represented in different directions, from showcasing the beautiful paths and trails of Maryland, or celebrating the wellness benefits of walking, to even more figurative interpretations such as journeying through life’s trials and triumphs. This gallery is free and open to everyone from October 27 to November 20.

Learn more here.


CA Costume Crawl and Trunk or Treat

Get your steps in while in costume! Show off your spookiest looks before CA’s 2nd Annual Trunk or Treat at a fun FREE Costume Crawl on Saturday, October 29.

The Crawl will start at Columbia Athletic Club, and take about 30 minutes (about 3/4 of a mile) along a safe route. Special super heroes, spookies and more will be in attendance to cheer you on! We’ll end at Trunk or Treat at the Columbia SportsPark, where each participant will receive a small prize.

Learn more here.


We want to see YOU enjoy Walktober

We ♥️ how much this community embraces Walktober!

Be sure to tag us in your photos as you hit the pathways this month. We’d love to share them with our community and inspire people to get walking. Don’t forget to follow us on Facebook and Instagram for fun Walktober stories and challenges all month long. 

Wondering where to walk? Here’s an electronic pathways map to help you take advantage of all that CA’s open space has to offer. You can access more than 170 tot lots, nearly 300 footbridges, three lakes and more. Whether you walk, bike, jog or roll, CA’s pathways are open to everyone.

And if you’re looking for some kid-friendly ideas, here are six walks that are relatively short and easy to navigate and include kid-friendly features (plus fun nature collection activities to jazz things up).

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