Birds swimming in the lake, joggers and bikers enjoying their morning exercise and 70-degree weather accompanied the monthly wellness walk in Childs Park on Saturday, March 27. The neighborhood association hosts a wellness walk on the fourth Saturday of every month at 9 a.m., meeting in the park at 4301 13th Ave. S.
“The idea behind it is actually a part of the City of St. Pete’s Healthy St. Pete initiative. And so we do neighborhood wellness walks as a part of a larger program that they’re doing with the city of St. Pete,” Brother John Muhammad, president of the Childs Park Neighborhood Association, said.
Organizers of the walk handed out watches that doubled as step counters, and neighborhoods around Florida tally their steps to see if, collectively, participants have walked the state of Florida.
If community members are uncomfortable meeting in person, or are unable to attend the scheduled walk, they can walk on their own time and post their exercise on the association’s Facebook page.
“They don’t have to do it here. But if they can just, you know, get out and do some walking and then let us know by posting in the neighborhood wellness group on our Facebook page, so that we can keep track of how many people are actually participating,” Muhammad said.
After the walk, participants finished the session with some breathing exercises and stretches to welcome positive thoughts and energy into the mind, body and spirit.
“I’m really encouraging people to come out and, you know, just kind of walk it out. It’s only an hour,” Muhammad said. “We stick around for some time after that just to socialize and be neighbors.”