; Blue Cross And Blue Shield Companies Host Sixth Annual National Walk@Lunch Day®
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Press Release

Blue Cross And Blue Shield Companies Host Sixth Annual National Walk@Lunch Day®

Tens of thousands of people nationwide are putting on their walking shoes to walk at lunch

April 25, 2012

WASHINGTON – Today, Blue Cross and Blue Shield companies across the country are hosting the sixth annual National Walk@Lunch Day® for their employees, local employers and communities.  The lunchtime walking program was created by the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association (BCBSA) to encourage people to take steps toward better health by incorporating physical activity into their daily lives.

According to the American Dietetic Association, more than 75 percent of office workers eat at their desks two to three times a week.  Another study published in Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise found that Americans walk 30 to 40 minutes less each day – or nearly 5,000 steps – when compared to their counterparts in other countries.

"Walking can be a simple, safe and effective way to get the regular exercise that we all may need to combat obesity and serious, but preventable diseases," said Scott P. Serota, BCBSA's president and CEO.  "Blue Cross and Blue Shield companies nationwide are committed to offering programs like National Walk@Lunch Day that complement – not compete with – their busy schedules. We celebrate the thousands of walkers from coast to coast that joined us today in turning a working lunch into a walking lunch."

Nationwide, hundreds of companies, schools, community organizations, and state and local governments are hosting or participating in National Walk@Lunch Day events.  Below are highlights of some of the National Walk@Lunch Day activities that are taking place across the country:

  • Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Kansas (BCBSKS) is hosting walks in three cities, including Topeka, Salina and Wichita.  In Topeka, nearly 600 BCBSKS employees are participating in a lunchtime walk at the Kansas Judicial Center.  BCBSKS employees and other participants in Salina are gatering at Campbell Plaza for a short rally before the walk; and in Wichita, BCBSKS is planning a one-mile walk along the Arkansas River.
  • More than 33,000 people from across the state of Nebraska signed up with Blue Cross and Blue Shield of Nebraska (BCBSNE) to walk during National Walk@Lunch Day.  BCBSNE is organizing three walks for National Walk@Lunch Day, including two in Omaha and one in Lincoln.  In addition to the BCBSNE walks, more than 12,500 staff and students representing 56 Nebraska schools, including the University of Nebraska-Lincoln, also are planning National Walk@Lunch Day events.
  • Independence Blue Cross (IBC) continues to inspire and motivate employers, associates, and community members to walk for wellness.  For this year's National Walk@Lunch Day, IBC is working with 100 employer groups to coordinate walks for more than 13,000 walkers in Center City, Philadelphia and around the southern Pennsylvania region.  Philadelphia Mayor Michael Nutter will help IBC kick off the National Walk@Lunch Day.

Before beginning any new exercise regime, consult your doctor or healthcare provider.  For more information on National Walk@Lunch Day, please visit http://www.bcbs.com/walkatlunch.  You can connect with us at www.facebook.com/BCBSAssociation, follow us on Twitter @BCBSAssociation and join the conversation with #NWLD.

The Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association is a national federation of 36 independent, community-based and locally-operated Blue Cross and Blue Shield companies that collectively provide healthcare coverage for nearly 105 million members – one-in-three Americans.  For more information on the Blue Cross and Blue Shield Association and its member companies, please visit bcbs.com. We encourage you to connect with us on Facebook, check out our videos on YouTube, follow us on Twitter and check out The BCBS Blog, for up-to-date information about BCBSA.