Tag Archives: Walking


How quickly the summer school break goes by.  It seems the schools just ended another year, and now it’s almost time to begin a new one.  There is much anticipation in the air, especially for students that will experience school for the first time, or moving up to middle school, or high school.  This is our reminder to you that our future generations are going to be either walking, on a bus, in a carpool, or riding their bikes to school.  It is our responsibility as drivers to slow down and pay close attention.

Our second reminder: be sure your kids have received all their shots that are required to go to school.  Free clinics are offering these shots, so now’s the time to take care of it.  This is as important, or more so, than all the school supplies they will be needing. 

Many states have laws that forbid drivers using cell phones in a school zone.  This is a good law, and one that persons shouldn’t mind abiding by.  Save that conversation for later, after you have stopped your car and gotten out of it.  We need to remind our teens that texting and driving don’t mix at any time, and more so when there are chances of little ones crossing the streets or getting off the school bus. 

Schools must put a stop to school bus bullying or physical encounters on buses.  Schools should have constant communication systems between the bus drivers and the main office.  In case of an incident, school officials or law enforcement should step in immediately.  We have seen incidents that have been recorded on cell phones.  The person doing the recording should be calling for help, as well.  They may be afraid of a confrontation with the bully or bullies, but school administration officials should have a zero tolerance for this type of behavior. 

Parents, go with your little ones for the first few times if they will be riding a bus.  Be sure they understand when to get off safely and never to walk in front or directly behind the bus; rather, let the bus pull away first.  If they are walking, please accompany them for a while, and if you can, find an older child that you know and trust to walk with them.  Be sure they understand to obey the school crossing guard, who is there for their safety, and only cross streets at the corner. 

Another tip for parents: don’t overload your child’s backpack.  Their little backs can only carry so much, so balance the books, pens, crayons, etc. to lighten their load as much as possible. 

For those drivers who go to work each day, leave the house a little early, to allow time to stop for school children or a school bus.  It’s better to get to work on time, if possible, so take those extra minutes to head out and pay attention to little pedestrians. 

Many of us grew up or raised our children in much more innocent times.  Our children are most precious; if you live in a neighborhood that is not completely safe, please don’t send your child out alone.  Be sure they go to school in a group.  All kids should be taught never to talk to strangers or get in a vehicle with someone they don’t know.   

These tips are reminders for all of us – drivers, parents, teenagers, teachers, bus drivers, and school administrators –  to do our best to make this a very safe year for our children.  We should commit to seeing that they are kept safe and secure at all times.




















Exercises You Can Do From Home (Guest Post)

In our hectic lifestyle, we generally don’t get enough time to do exercises at the regular interval. So for this reason, sometimes we face difficulty in keeping our body and mind fresh and active. But if we think deeply, then we can still manage our time to do exercises during our stay at our home as well. For this matter, you will need a little bit of imagination. Rather if you do your exercises along with your daily home chores, then you can keep yourself fit and active despite your fast lifestyle.


It is one of the best free hand exercises for you at your home. The reason is that you have to walk around for your daily household jobs from one corner of your house to the other corner of the your home. It is a kind of physical exercise without any fitness equipment. Moreover, through walking, your whole body will get active and fresh, so you will feel healthy and comfortable.


Actually jogging means walking at a slower pace or leisurely way. So you can do it when you are hearing the music or you are viewing the the blockbuster movies at your home. It is a very good exercise for you at home. If you are fighting with obesity, then jogging will help you much in this matter. It will also help you to control the cardiovascular problem in your body. Moreover, jogging will increase your lifespan and control your aging problem.


It is a unique solution for free hand exercise. Moreover, your body will synchronize with your dancing rhythm. Dancing will help you to shed a lot of calories from your body and it will also keep you fit as well. Even, if you are a music lover, then you can learn the dancing style by playing the dancing video clips or from any dance master as well.


You can do jumping practices at your home. Particularly, you can do it from any suitable height in your home compound. Rather, you can try it at your backward area where you will get a lot of opportunities for it. Jumping is very much good for cardiovascular problem. But you have to do it after with the consultation of a doctor. The reason is that if you are an older person, then you should do it carefully abiding all health rules.

Weight lifting

It is a good exercise at your home. Actually, you can do it within your house parameter without ignoring its norms. You sometimes can carry a bucket of water from one room to the other room in your home. If you do it at the regular interval, then your body will be fit and comfortable.

So, you can do exercises from your home without any fitness equipment but you should do it with your imagination. Because, you can do exercise more various types than the aforementioned ways in your home if you need more. One interesting point to observe that you will not require spending any money for keeping your body fit and healthy.

About The Author:  

Margaret is a writer/ blogger.  She contributes to Marnie Bennett. Check Here for more on Marnie Bennett.


It’s hard to believe another school year is rolling around!  Parents are busy buying supplies and new clothes, ready to take that “first day of school” picture of their little students!  This is an important time for students, parents, and teachers to get the year started off with a bang.  It’s up to everyone to see that these kids are safe while they are on a school bus, crossing the street, or being carpooled. 

Drivers must pay special attention as they approach crosswalks and are in neighborhoods where kids are walking to school.  They may be busy talking to each other and forget to be as careful as they should.  That’s when we all must do our part to ensure their safety.  When you are backing out of your driveway, take it a little slower, just in case there are some small pedestrians in your drive.  Be watchful for children on and near the road in the morning and after school.  Take extra time to watch for children on medians, curbs, and at intersections.  Slow down and be alert.  Turn your cell phone off and concentrate on the road while you are driving in school zones. 

Until a child is 10 years old, they should cross the street with an adult.  If they walk to school, help find another child they can walk with.  Caution them to cross only at corners, using traffic signals and crosswalks, or obey the crosswalk guard.  Kids should know never to run into the streets or cross in between parked cars. 

School bus safety is very important.  Tell your child to wait for the bus to stop before stepping off the curb.  They should stay seated while on the bus, and use lap or shoulder straps if the bus has them.  Children should always get on and off the bus at locations that provide safe access to the bus or school building.  They should always remain in the driver’s view. 

If they ride a bike to school, make sure they always wear a helmet.  They should ride on the right side of the road, with the direction of auto traffic.  Teach them to use the correct hand signals.  Wearing brightly colored clothing will increase visibility; also, there are high visibility stickers that could be placed on the bike or backpack to help be noticed. 

In several states, record-high temperatures continue to be recorded.  Consideration should be given about food safety, for children who take their lunch.  It’s been noted that foods that should be refrigerated spoil during the time they stay in lunchboxes.  Choose what you send carefully;  non-perishables would be best, or ask the teacher is if there is a small refrigerator in the room that your child’s lunchbox or sack lunch could be kept until lunchtime. 

Backpacks should have wide, padded shoulder straps and a padded back.  Heavier items should be packed closer to the center of the backpack.  It should never weigh more than 10 to 20 per cent of the weight of your child.  Rolling backpacks are a good choice for students with a heavy load of books, etc.  Just be sure the school allows this type of backpack, and that it won’t have to be lugged up stairs. 

There are so many things to express about school safety.  We wish every child from Pre-K to 12 a very happy school year!  Good luck to the parents, too!


The world we live in is inhabited by many predators, some who prey on women; regardless of their age, females are targets, and must do all they can to be aware of their surroundings in order to be safe.  Women may be victims of domestic abuse – violence committed by a boyfriend or someone they know.  Some acts of aggression are drug or alcohol related.  Statistics show that many acts of crime against women go unreported. 

According to the National Crime Victims Rights Resource Guide, the U.S. Department of Justice, Office of Justice Programs and Office of Victims of Crimes, statistics from 2007 show that in the next hour, somewhere in the United States, the following will happen:

  • 900 thefts;
  • 189 violent crimes;
  • 124 assaults;
  • 66 robberies;
  • 24 sexual assaults;
  • 12 rapes; and
  • 2 murders.

Note: these numbers were from a 2007 report; without doubt, the totals have increased since that time.  Of course, not all these will result in crimes against women, but our focus for today is to help women understand how to live more safely.  One suggestion is to wear expensive jewelry on special occasions only, when you are not alone. 

In vehicles, remember:

  • Stepping out of the car either at home or in an isolated area can be a danger area.
  • Check your car before entering it.
  • Always be alert in parking lots, especially if it is dark.  If you are at a mall, don’t be shy about asking security to walk you to your car.
  • Never leave the car unlocked, even for a few minutes.
  • If someone pulls up beside you and points to a tire, don’t pull over.  Drive to a police station or busy place before you get out of your car.
  • Be sure your doors are locked and windows are up when you stop at an intersection.
  • If someone is pointing a knife or handgun at you from inside the car, don’t get into it, but run and scream.  More than likely, he will drive off, but if you enter the car, he has a better chance to harm you. 

If you take public transportation, remember:

  • Wait inside a coffee shop until the bus or train arrives.
  • Don’t sit by a window, in order to avoid someone sitting beside you and blocking your exit.
  • Choose train compartments carrying the most passengers or sit directly behind the driver.
  • Sit behind the bus driver or next to the door for a quick exit. 

At work:

  • Be thoughtful about the clothing you plan to wear.  You don’t want to get the wrong kind of attention.
  • Be friendly and polite, but be attentive for signs of “odd” behavior.  Do not flirt.
  • Be firm about unwanted attention.
  • Do not share personal information such as living alone, marital status, etc.
  • Trust your instincts. 

While walking or jogging:

  • If you are in an isolated area, don’t use your music headset; stay alert.
  • Change your routes on a regular basis.
  • Don’t be temped to use your cell phone while walking; don’t become distracted.
  • The “buddy system” is always best; don’t go alone.  There is safety in numbers.
  • If you feel as though someone in a car is following you, turn around and take another route.
  • If you walk/jog in your neighborhood, find houses that you feel you are welcome to use as a “safe house,” – one that you can find refuge in, owned by a friend or acquaintance.
  • Always have your cell phone with you. 

In social settings:

  • Do not drink excessive amounts of alcohol, or take drugs that can alter your personality and actions.
  • Stay with your group.
  • Do not leave with strangers.
  • Never leave any food or drink unattended where it could be tampered with. 

Keep in mind, that you need your cell phone with you at all times.  There are safety items that may be purchased to give you a little peace of mind, such as pepper spray, or a personal alarm, which is a small but loud device that will draw attention to an emergency situation.  The pepper spray causes pain to an attacker, and lasts about 20-30 minutes but causes no permanent damage.  In many states, it is unlawful to use something such as pepper spray or mace unless it is for self-defense. 

Many sexual acts are committed by people that the victims know, or thought they did.  An attack is usually preceded by a visual sign, which is often preceded by a verbal approach before the physical action.  Recognize the sequence: the look – the talk – the attack.  Most women think this can never happen to them, but it can occur anytime, anywhere, to all ages.  Recently, a 60-something year-old  lady was kidnapped and assaulted for days by a 58 year-old man.  He had been asking her out, but she was not interested.  After telling her family about the man, he took her hostage, burning her house and car.  Because she had mentioned the man to her family, law authorities found both of them in his home several miles away.  Because he tied her up, she was virtually helpless.  Now he is in jail, and hopefully, will be put away for a long time, where he cannot hurt or threaten anyone else.

Be aware of your surroundings at all times.  Stay in touch with family and friends so they know where you can be reached.  We just can’t be too careful!


This year approximately 55 million students will return to classrooms in the United States.  Regardless of how they get to and from school, whether it’s walking, biking, riding in a car, or bus, safety is a concern the minute they leave their home.  This is the time that parents need to plan how they can ensure the safety of their children by being involved in every aspect of their school experience.  Many students are apprehensive about beginning a new school year, and parents must assure them that they will be there for them, listening to their concerns.

 This is a good time to get your student in the habit of getting to bed early.  It’s hard to wind down from summer, getting to stay up later than usual.  Getting a head start on “early to bed, early to rise” might help them get used to their early morning routine. 

A great way for kids to get more exercise is to walk or ride a bicycle to school.  If it is possible for your child to do this, walk the route with them to find the safest way possible.  The best plan is to have a group from the neighborhood go together each day.  There’s always safety in numbers.  If your student rides his/her bike to school, be sure that they wear their helmet every time they get on the bike.  Wearing helmets can reduce the risk of injury by up to 85%.  Also, caution them to walk their bike across the streets, and to obey traffic signals and crosswalk guards.  Wearing bright colors or reflective gear will help your child be seen, whether riding or walking.

“Stranger Danger” is always an important thing you must teach your children.  They should never talk to strangers or get in vehicles with someone they don’t know.  Many predators apper to be very nice and can lure children with candy, or ask them to help look for a lost puppy, etc.  Most youngsters know to tell their teacher or parent if they notice someone suspicious hanging around their school. 

Check out the school playground that your youngster will be using.  More than 200,000 children, ages 14 and younger, are treated in emergency rooms for playground-associated injuries each year, mainly caused by falls from equipment.  It’s also a good idea to scope out the school menu.  On days that healthy options are not available, pack a lunch.  Be sure to start them off with a good breakfast, and send a nutritious meal that they will enjoy.  Food to be sent to school should be kept in the refrigerator until time to leave for school.  Packing a frozen juice box, or water bottle in an insulated lunch bag will help keep lunch products cool. 

Most kids carry their school supplies in backpacks.  Younger children should not carry a backpack that is more than 10% to 15% of their body weight.  Help them arrange their load, by packing the heavier items first, which results in less strain on their backs and shoulders. 

Transportation is one of the most important safety concerns during school years.  Be sure children are buckled up.  Every driver should let their children out of the vehicle in front of their school, and not leave until they see that they have entered the building.  We again stress what we say every year, “slow down.”  Parents should allow plenty of time to get their kids to school and then on to work.  If your child rides a school bus, he should understand how to get on and off the bus safely.  

There are many other things to think about when it comes to school and safety.  Pay close attention to details that you feel are important to your child’s well-being.  Parents sometimes get overwhelmed with responsibilities of raising children, trying to combine work, school, church, and other activities.  The twelve years of school (plus kindergarten) go by faster than one can realize.  Try to slow down and enjoy every minute of your child’s school experience that you can.  You’ll be sending them off to college before you know it!


We’ve talked about drunk, drowsy, distracted, and deadly drivers in the past, but how about “distracted walkers?”  The American College of Emergency Physicians issued a warning several months ago after gathering information from across the United States about the increasing number of patients that are treated in emergency rooms after being injured in pedestrian accidents while using their cellphones to text or talk.  And worse, just this week, a 14-year old boy in Florida was killed when he stepped in front of an oncoming car that he did not see because he was texting on his cellphone.  This follows pedestrian deaths in New York and Illinois that have prompted two state lawmakers to submit bills banning texting while walking in their states.

The thought of such legislation is sure to be the source of late-night jokes, but this is a serious matter.  Several states have already banned the use of cell phones while driving in school zones, and texting while driving has been shown to be as deadly as drinking while driving.  There’s just no way one can pay attention while typing and walking or driving.  As a public relations ploy last March, (which lasted only twenty-four hours), a busy street in London was pictured with lampposts covered with rugby goalposts cushions.  This was in an area that is known for heavy digital gadget users.  This gimmick showed that persons walked into lampposts, trash containers, telephone poles, and even walls while focusing their attention on their mobile gadgets.  Most injuries are superficial; however, there have been many deaths caused by either inattention of walkers, or drivers that have hit pedestrians who were either jaywalking or stepping off a curb while texting or talking on their phone.

If bicyclists, rollerbladers, pedestrians, and skateboarders could wait to use their electronic devices after they are finished with their activities, they will have a better chance to stay in one piece.  If they receive a message, they should wait until they stop to check it out.  It is the misuse of these expensive gadgets that is getting us in trouble – both behind the wheel and now on our own two feet.  It’s been proven that multitasking leads to less efficient production than focusing on one job at a time.  True, it’s hard to believe we ever got along without cell phones because of the convenience they afford.  But trying to communicate at a time we should be thinking about where we are going, and how we are getting there, is a risk we shouldn’t be willing to take.  Better to send or retrieve that message when you reach your destination safely than while you are waiting to be seen in an emergency room.

More than 1,000 pedestrians required emergency room visits in 2008 because they were distracted and tripped, fell, or ran into something while using a cellphone to text or talk.  The number of accidents is probably much higher than that, because many of the injuries are not severe enough to need a visit to the hospital.  Ira Hyman, a psychology professor at Western Washington University in Bellingham, Washington, recently conducted a study on this subject.  He noted that many times pedestrians using their phones don’t even notice objects or people right in front of them.  He says the term commonly applied to such preoccupation is “inattention blindness”, which means a person can be looking at an object but fail to process what it is.  He proved this when he and his students had one of the students dress as a clown and ride a unicycle around a central square on campus.  Twenty-five percent of people talking on a cellphone at the time did not even see the clown.

Hopefully, this will serve as a reminder to walk with care, just as you drive.  Teach your kids that safety should always come first.  It may be cool to walk around with an iPod, or phone, but tell them to get in the habit of thinking about the trouble these devices can cause by simply not paying attention.  This applies to folks of all ages; you could trip over your cat in your own home while you are talking on the phone.  Stay focused on the task at hand, and you will stay safe!


Make this your goal:  to walk 50 miles per month.  This great information from the AARP Bulletin gives these excellent reasons to promise yourself that you will walk 50 miles per month:

1.    Get fit:  Aerobic capacity: 19% increase; physical function: 25% increase, and risk of disability: 41% decrease.

2.    Save on annual medical bills.  Normal-weight retiree: $3,300, Overweight retiree: $2,500 and entire country: $1.4 trillion.

3.    Improve cardiovascular health.  Heart disease: 32% lower risk; Stroke: 33% lower risk, Type 2 Diabetes: 71% lower risk.

4.    Fight cancer. Breast: 18% lower risk; Colon: 31% lower risk; All forms: 33% higher survival rate.

5.    Lose weight.  Each walk: 150 calories; Monthly: 1.3 pounds; Annually: 15.6 pounds.

6.    Accelerate recovery.  Depression: 47% reduction of symptoms, Skin wounds: shorten healing by 10 days.

7.    Battle degenerative disease.  Alzheimer’s: 40% lower risk; Arthritis: 46% lower risk, Osteoporosis: 0% loss of bone density.

Listed are seven things you will have accomplished once you make this a routine part of your day.  Just half an hour of walking each day at a brisk pace of 3.5 mph will help you achieve these benefits, regardless of your age. Bone density is improved by any weight bearing exercise, and what could be better than walking?

Who can’t spare 30 minutes per day?  You could even do it on your lunch hour, before work, or after work.  If you aren’t already doing so, try it!  Walking is also a great way to relieve stress.  If you want to get really serious, get a pedometer.  An average of 10,000 steps per day will help you lose weight.  (Just don’t get into the candy after your walk!)


Walking is an inexpensive way to get exercise and fresh air, all at the same time!  My day begins with taking my dog for a walk.  He thinks his day is ruined if he doesn’t get to go for a walk; therefore, I have him to thank for motivating me to get into a healthy routine.
Living in a small town, I don’t face as many obstacles as those who live in cities do.  Walkers in larger towns have walking lanes that provide a safe place to walk, but there are other hazards they face.

Here are some tips that may be helpful:

  • Be sure to walk where there is sufficient lighting.
  • Wear bright colors or reflective clothing in order to be visible to drivers.
  • Carry a flashlight if you walk when daylight begins to dim.
  • Watch for speeding or distracted drivers.
  • Carry a cell phone with you.
  • Walk against traffic.
  • Leave jewelry at home.
  • Stay on the sidewalk if possible.
  • Cross only at marked intersections.
  • See and Be Seen!
  • Have a walking partner; if you have a dog, you will make his/her day!

According to the Federal Highway Administration, there are almost 5,000 pedestrian deaths annually in the United States.  Don’t be a statistic, stay safe!