Join the Act Fast 97,000 Mile Challenge
Do you know someone who has had a stroke? Chances are, you do.Join the Challenge!
In the US, a Stroke occurs every 40 seconds and is the leading cause of long term disability. In Minnesota alone, more than 5% of all deaths are due to stroke, making it the 5th highest cause of death in the state. In 2012, the Minnesota Dept of Health states that 97,000 Minnesotans reported experiencing a stroke in their lifetime.
My grandfather had a stroke less than a year before he passed away. It was hard watching a man with such a quick wit and sharp mind be slowed in such a way that prevented him from doing the things he loved. Although stoke is more common in adults over 65, it’s not exclusively an “old person” thing.
Stroke affects an immense number of people; perhaps you have a friend, or family member who has had a stroke…perhaps you have had a stroke yourself.
The Minnesota Stroke Association would like to invite you to do something to help those effected by stroke.
What is a Stroke?
According to the National Stroke Association,
“A stroke or “brain attack” occurs when a blood clot blocks an artery (a blood vessel that carries blood from the heart to the body) or a blood vessel (a tube through which the blood moves through the body) breaks, interrupting blood flow to an area of the brain.
When either of these things happen, brain cells begin to die and brain damage occurs. When brain cells die during a stroke, abilities controlled by that area of the brain are lost. These abilities include speech, movement and memory.”
Because this can happen in a variety of locations in the brain, it will affect each person differently.
How to Prevent a Stroke
Eating healthier, reducing your blood pressure, sleeping more, quit smoking and consuming less alcohol all contribute to a lower risk of stroke. Exercise, however, may be the one thing that ties it all together.
According to health.com,
“Exercise helps reduce blood pressure by making the heart stronger. And the stronger the heart, the less effort it takes to pump blood around the body—so the lower the blood pressure. Physical activity also can help decrease the risk of developing diabetes and control cholesterol levels, both of which up your chances of a stroke.”
If you’re reading this, you’re probably a runner who is already leading an active lifestyle. That’s great! You probably know people who aren’t as active. Almost any form of physical activity when done for 20 – 30 minutes, five days a week, has been linked to reducing the risk of stroke.
What could you do right now to encourage someone in your life to get more active? How about a challenge?
Join the Act FAST 97,000 Mile Challenge
May is National Stroke Awareness Month and we’ve partnered with The Minnesota Stroke Association to extend a challenge to the state of Minnesota – the Act FAST 97,000 mile challenge! Their mission is to raise awareness about stroke and to enhance the quality of life for all people coping with its sudden and long-term effects. They work hard to make sure that people can recognize the signs of stroke and how to Act FAST* when they see them.
The 97,000 mile challenge is intended to encourage a healthy and active lifestyle – the cornerstone to stroke prevention – while honoring the 97,000 Minnesotans who have sustained a stroke in their lifetimes. The goal is to get Minnesotans to run, walk, bike, hike, swim (or any activity you can measure) 97,000 miles by the end of 2014.
What if, by doing something as simple as logging the miles you’re already running, and encouraging those you love to get more active, you could play a part in reducing that number? Simply log your miles here and watch us move the needle with the rest of the state.
Additionally, join us on May 1st, 2014 as we kick off National Stroke Awareness Month and start logging your miles.
Your Next Step
Forward this to 5 people you know. Some who are already active and would love to log their miles. Others who aren’t as active, and could benefit from some mutual encouragement!