Congress: Counting the steps to physical fitness

July 4, 2008

Want your patients to get in shape? Suggest they buy pedometers and start racking up miles.

Want your patients to get in shape? Suggest they buy pedometers and start racking up miles. Research suggests that people who use this simple device walk more, often with significant improvement in weight. If our national legislators are any indication, adding a competitive element is even more likely to get them to pick up the pace.

At press time, Congress was in the midst of a six-week pedometer contest, sponsored by the Blue Cross Blue Shield Association. Using a formula reminiscent of the one the Founding Fathers used to determine the make-up of Congress, the WalkingWorks Capitol Hill Challenge features categories that reflect the unequal size of the House and the Senate: one for the team with the most overall miles and one for the highest average miles per walker. The winners will have donations made in their names.