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February 5, 2013

Walkers hit their stride

Parks and Recreation offers indoor Walking Club

By Maria Allard
C & G Staff Writer

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Pat Stanczyk, of Center Line, gets in her exercise through the Center Line Parks and Recreation’s free walking club at Center Line High School.

CENTER LINE — Jim Murray worked up a bit of a sweat.

As he marched down one hallway of Center Line High School and then another, the 56-year-old Center Line resident got in a good workout doing something simple: walking.

Each step he took helped him keep in shape, trim his waistline and improve his overall physical health.

“It’s good to exercise,” he said. “You always feel better. People don’t realize it helps to alleviate stress.”

Murray has another reason for staying healthy: He became a grandfather for the first time a couple months ago.

For the past several years, Center Line Parks and Recreation has offered an indoor walking program at CLHS. The walking club meets from 6:30-7:30 p.m. Monday through Thursday for anyone who wants to get some pep in their step. There’s no competition, as everyone walks at his or her own pace, and there is no fee.

The club runs from September through April. It serves as the ideal place for walkers who want to stroll their way to exercise in a warm location rather than outside in the cold. The walkers meet in room A-102, and for one hour stroll several hallways, which are decorated with student artwork and fliers of upcoming school events.

Pat Stanczyk can be found walking the school’s corridors on a regular basis.

“You can walk at your own speed,” the 70-year-old Center Line resident said. “It’s just good exercise.” 

Going for strolls is not new for Stanczyk. She got into the walking habit when her youngest child entered kindergarten. She and a friend would often powerwalk after their kids were in school. The avid walker has even walked across the Mackinac Bridge.

“Walking is something you have all your life,” said Stanczyk, who relies on a pedometer to keep track of her miles.

Angie Kolar got on the walking kick about three years ago.

“I come whenever I can, when I have a chance,” Kolar, 70, said. “I feel good after I walk. I feel empowered. I actually enjoy it. I know walking is good. All in all, I feel good when I walk.”

The Center Line resident doesn’t keep track of her miles.

“I go by the time,” said Kolar, who has lost a few pounds since taking up walking. She’s also noticed an improvement with her blood pressure. In addition to several health benefits, walking also gives Kolar the opportunity to pray.

“It’s time to reflect,” she said. 

Some walkers have gotten to know the high school’s evening custodians, including one staff member who often plays music in her section.

“I like when she has the radio on,” Kolar said. “You change your pace a little bit.”

Center Line High School is located at 26300 Arsenal in Center Line. Interested walkers can enter in the back of the building through the double doors near the fire hydrant off Busch Street. If school is closed, there is no walking. You don’t have to be a resident of Center Line or live within the school district to join in — the walking club is open to anyone. To reach Center Line Parks and Recreation call (586) 757-1610.

You can reach C & G Staff Writer Maria Allard at allard@candgnews.com or at (586)498-1045.