Rita Hodges

Extension service

Tired of burning gas and wearing out tires? Try burning calories and wearing out walking shoes instead.

The Texas AgriLife Extension Service, Ellis County, will challenge residents to participate in the fifth annual Walk Across Texas event. Now that the weather will be warming up, walkers all across the state will be forming teams (or, walking as an individual) and breaking out the walking shoes.

The idea behind Walk Across Texas is simple: encourage more residents of the Lone Star State to begin a program of regular exercise.

Teams, individuals and schools can walk–or run, dance, garden, swim or do any other form of exercise – for an eight-week period. Each 15 minutes of exercise counts as one mile. At the end of that time, each team or individual’s total mileage is added up.

All individuals that participate will receive a certificate for their effort. The individual/team that documents the most miles during the eight-week period will receive a trophy and certificate for their efforts.

The Ellis County event will begin March 5 and conclude April 30. To be in the competition, each individual and team must complete a registration form.

In 2010, more than 400 participated in the event, walking about 80,000 miles, which figures out to walking across Texas almost 10 times.

For more information, contact Rita M. Hodges, county extension agent for family and consumer sciences, 701 S. Interstate 35E, Suite 3, Waxahachie; call 972-825-5175; or e-mail rmhodges@ag.tamu.edu.