At the end of February 2015, my travels took me to Washington DC to speak at the National Physical Activity Plan Congress, which was held at the Ronald Reagan Building in our nation’s capital. This meeting brought together many leading experts from around the country to talk about advancing our National Physical Activity Plan (NPAP). Our NPAP was launched in 2010 and I served as chair of the Healthcare Sector for the Plan. The vision for this Plan is that one day all Americans will be physically active and will live, work and play in environments that facilitate regular physical activity. The plan is a comprehensive guideline outlining a set of policies, programs and initiatives designed to achieve this vision. You can view the plan at Much progress has been made since 2010, and this congress was a time to celebrate, evaluate and collaborate on the next iteration of the Plan.

The opening keynote address for the Congress was delivered by Dr. Wanda Jones, the U.S. Deputy Secretary for Health and her talk was followed by a host of great lectures on how we can make America friendlier for physical activity and stories about how this is being done in various cities across the country. I spoke about healthcare innovations in promoting physical activity. This gave me a chance to talk about the Exercise Vital Sign we have been using at Kaiser Permanente and the Every Body Walk! Campaign. I think both are great examples of ways we can help encourage people to walk to improve their health.

At the National Physical Activity Plan Congress with my friend Dr. Steve Blair

At the National Physical Activity Plan Congress with my friend Dr. Steve Blair

Of course, while I was in Washington DC I took time out to go for a few long walks. When I flew into DC for this meeting, a large snowstorm was just ending and I woke up the next day to blue skies and mild temperatures. Washington DC is one of my favorite cities to walk in because there are so many great sights to see. I took several long walks along the national mall, the capital building and the White House. Walking is the perfect way to explore a city and at the same time get the exercise you need to stay healthy.

I hope this blog finds you doing well and getting your walking in each day.

Keep walking my friends!