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Westfield Galleria walking club heads for strong start





More than 1,200 people have signed up to participate in a walking club at Westfield Galleria at Roseville, which starts at 8 a.m. Saturday with an easy-to-follow, mile-long route through the popular mall.
 
The club, called Walk to Thrive, is organized by Kaiser Permanente, which is giving away free t-shirts and pedometers to those who attend the inaugural walk, which begins in Center Court near JCPenney before the mall opens for business.
 
There is no cost to join the club, which is open to all members and nonmembers of Kaiser Permanente.
 
The Saturday kick-off is one of many programs and activities to be hosted at the mall by Kaiser Permanente, the Sacramento region's leading health-care provider and not-for-profit health plan. Kaiser Permanente, an integrated health system that is known for its attention to health education and disease prevention, seeks to encourage people to start or maintain a daily walking regimen.
 
"It seems simple, but walking at a moderate pace for just 30 minutes a day can help you lose weight, lower your blood pressure and reduce cholesterol," said Dr. Chris Palkowski, physician-in-chief of Kaiser Permanente Roseville Medical Center. "We encourage everybody to join the new walking club at the Galleria - you can walk with friends or family members, meet other people, stay fit, and have fun at the same time."

Kaiser Permanente offers several walking programs to members at its local hospitals and medical offices; the Walk to Thrive club at the Galleria extends the invitation to the general public, for residents of Placer County and surrounding communities who want to live a healthier lifestyle.

"As physicians we see first-hand the success our patients have when they participate in regular walking programs, whether in their own neighborhoods, or at our facilities in Roseville," Palkowski aded. "A growing number of people are taking steps toward better health, and we're cheering them on."

Kaiser Permanente physicians and health professionals will lead regularly scheduled walks and host monthly health education seminars at the Galleria for participants in Walk to Thrive. Club participants will have access to the mall in the morning before stores open, so they can enjoy a peaceful, climate-controlled walking environment, with no traffic, no intersections to cross, and a route they can enjoy with friends.

Anyone interested in the inaugural walk should plan to show up at 8 a.m. Saturday in the mall's Center Court, and register at: www.kpwalktothrive.org.



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