Move More Macomb Initiative Encourages Exercise and Healthy Living

With the Move More Macomb initiative, families in Macomb County are reaching their fitness goals – and living better lives – at all ages and stages.

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If getting in shape is part of your New Year’s resolution, you’re not alone. In fact, shedding those seasonal pounds and revamping your diet and exercise routine is a common goal among young and old.

But being more active is one resolution that should stick around for years and years to come.

Why? Living an active lifestyle has big benefits – including boosting your mood, getting better sleep and preventing chronic illnesses such as hypertension and diabetes.

In an effort to get the community involved in getting fit and healthy, Macomb County launched its Move More Macomb initiative and website in September 2018.

The initiative is connected to the county’s Make Macomb Your Home theme, says Bill Ridella, the director of the Macomb County Health Department.

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“It’s really about getting people to be more active, especially increasing physical activity in our county across all ages,” Ridella says.

The program was developed as part of a community health improvement plan, which came about after a community health assessment back in 2015.

“One of the goals of our community health improvement plan is reducing chronic disease – because, in Macomb County, more than 50 percent of deaths are actually caused by four major chronic diseases that are directly related to three health behaviors, including lack of physical activity,” says Emily Norton, public health analyst with the Macomb County Health Department.

“We know that these preventable health behaviors are really a huge, huge, huge indicator for health issues later on.”

For those who haven’t been exercising – or those who are looking to ramp up their routine – the Move More Macomb initiative website is a great place to start, no matter your age or fitness level.

“People wanted to be active but they didn’t know where to go to be active,” Norton says, so the county stepped in to offer assistance – and get the entire community involved.

The website is broken up into the following sections:

  • What is physical activity?
  • When do I need physical activity?
  • Where can I do physical activity?
  • Why do I need physical activity?
  • How can I start?

The “where” tab, Norton adds, houses the bulk of the information. It features links to parks and recreation departments, Huron-Clinton Metroparks, trails and other spots to work on your fitness.

And, in Macomb County, there are plenty of places to get moving all year round. Plus you don’t have to do it alone, thanks to a number of clubs.

“There are biking clubs, walking clubs and jogging clubs,” Ridella says. “We know the trails are getting better connected in Macomb County (too). I think these are the things that people are looking for.”

Residents are encouraged to give their feedback on the website, Norton says. Ultimately, the goal is to provide information and an opportunity to be active and live a healthier lifestyle.

“There’s a need to be promoting good, healthy lifestyles, the importance of physical activity– and also it’s really focusing on having that behavior developed as young person,” Ridella says.

“We want those young children to really become physically active because we see that it’s something that can be carried through the life course. If you develop good physical activity habits as a young child, a lot of that stays with you throughout the rest of your life.”

For more information on Move More Macomb, visit the Move More Macomb initiative website.

To get additional details about Macomb County, visit the Make Macomb Your Home website.

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