Marietta Y starts lunchtime walking club

Those looking for a healthier lunch hour can start walking with the Marietta Family YMCA’s new Lunchtime Walking Club every Tuesday and Thursday.

The club meets at 12:15 p.m. by the Putnam Bridge and everyone in the community is encouraged to get a slight workout.

Only a few people showed up for the first walk, but for Aynsley Lasalvia, 31, it was something fun she could do with her son, Luca, 3.

“We just moved here from New York state (three months ago),” she said. “We’re just joining everything to meet people. We love being a part of a community.”

She said so far, walking has been a part of everyday life.

“That’s what we like most about Marietta-walking everywhere,” Lasalvia said. “We heard about this and thought that’s something that’s right up our alley.”

Suzy Zumwalde, director of the Y, said representatives for the YMCA have gone out to area businesses to promote the new club, and many think it’s a good idea.

“I’m very pleased with the response we’ve gotten so far,” she said. “It wasn’t just something we thought was a good idea; (others did, too).”

The walk is set to last about 45 minutes along the River Trail, but Zumwalde said that’s dependent upon the walkers.

“The walk depends on where the group wants to go,” she said. “Some may have 45 minutes, some may have just 30. They decide which direction and course depending on who shows up that day. They might decide to walk up to Mound Cemetery (instead of along the trail).”

If the weather turns stormy or cold for the winter, there is a backup plan.

“If the weather does not cooperate, we’ll meet at Dyson Baudo (at Marietta College) and use the indoor track,” Zumwalde said. “I think we’ll keep it going as long as we can.”

One good thing people get out of the walk is 30 to 45 minutes of exercise, said Zumwalde.

“I think it’ll give individuals an opportunity to get out and exercise…like (the experts) say you should do everyday,” she said. “I think we’ll see people making new friends…It’s more fun to exercise with somebody.”

Becky Singree, of Chesterhill, walked from the Washington-Morgan Community Action offices on Wayne Street to meet the group.

“Exercise is really good for you,” she said. “When you’re sitting at a desk (all day), it’s really nice to get out and walk…and you meet a lot of wonderful people.”

Stephanie Angelo, personal trainer with the Y, said the facility’s goal is to get the community involved in healthy activities.

“Taking a midday break from work really does help to de-stress,” she said. “Exercise releases endorphins that make you feel good instead of feeling sluggish and tired…It’s good to increase your heart rate…(Exercise) just creates a happier work environment.”