KEYSER - Aging & Family Services, in conjunction with WV on the Move, began a walking program in 2005.

For the News Tribune
KEYSER - Aging & Family Services, in conjunction with WV on the Move, began a walking program in 2005. 
This program, which continues today, recognizes the sedentary problem facing our community and attempts to help address it.  The mobility and isolation issues senior citizens face are even more challenging.  Over 400 participants have registered for this program since its inception.
During the program, participants log their steps daily and report them to the senior center or nutrition site weekly. Steps are converted into miles, and the distance is marked on a predetermined route.
In the past, participants followed their progress on a route equivalent to northbound U.S. Route 1. This route, a major East Coast highway, is the oldest highway in the United States and runs over 2,000 miles from Key West, Florida, north to Fort Kent, Maine.  Large maps are placed in the senior centers and allow walkers to view their progress.
Sixteen walkers reached the 2,377-mile destination over the past few years.
Beginning in 2018, Mineral County walkers began to trek across U.S. Route 50. Running coast-to-coast through the heart of America on a 3,200-mile odyssey from sea to shining sea, U.S. 50 passes through a dozen different states and four state capitals, as well as the nation's capital, Washington, D.C. Along the route are some of the country's most magnificent landscapes: the Sierra Nevada and the Appalachian and the Rocky Mountains, the endless farmlands of the Great Plains, and the desiccated deserts of Utah and Nevada. It follows the footsteps of pioneers and gives a reverse timeline of national development.  You can travel back in history from the cutting-edge high tech of contemporary Silicon Valley, across the Wild West frontier of the mid-1800s, and through lands, the likes of Daniel Boone and countless others pioneered in the 1700s, before arriving at the Atlantic Ocean near some of the oldest and best-preserved colonial-era landscapes in the United States.
Aging & Family Services began an exclusive "million-step" club as a part of this walking program. Special recognition is given to walkers who have reached one million steps during any of the official walking programs. One million steps are equivalent to 500 miles.
There are currently almost 20 members of this club.
A ten-week walking program is held in the spring, and a six-week program is held each fall. The 2020 ten-week spring/summer program begins on April 20 and concludes on June 28.  Individuals of any age can sign-up.
To sign up, please call the main office at 304-788-5467. You may choose to either have a log sheet sent to you in the mail, via email, or you may pick one up at your local senior center when you pick up your to-go-lunch.
“To ensure we are practicing social distancing at this time, you will not be able to come to the main office and pick up the log sheet,” said a spokesperson for the agency. “Also, we are not able to have a kick-off party this season. However, we will celebrate in person after the program has ended and once social restrictions are lifted.”
Aging & Family Services of Mineral County would like to extend an invitation to all local businesses to join the 2020 Spring "On The Move" Walking Program!
Coworkers and staff can compete to see who can walk the farthest during a ten weeks starting April 20 through June 28.  “We can still stay active and healthy while practicing social distancing. And who doesn't like a good friendly competition?”
Walking log sheets are available on the Aging & Family Services Facebook page.  Participants will log their steps on a log sheet and after the ten weeks report totals to Aging & Family Services.  When the program ends, all participating business will be recognized on the A&FS Facebook page.
To register your business or to obtain additional information, please message A&FS via Facebook, or call the main office at 304-788-5467.