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Free Couch to 5k Program Begins in March

The RoCo Fit Advisory League announces the 10th year and 2020 spring session of the free and fun RoCo Fit “Couch to 5k” Program begins March 10th. RoCo Fit volunteer mentors are ready to encourage participants to reach all types of goals, from finishing a 5k (3.1 miles) to reducing depression and stress. Whatever your goal – physical or emotional, walking or running, this group will help you accomplish it.

With the guidance of experienced mentors using a 12-week structured progressive schedule, participants will have fun and finish a Mock 5k race on May 26th. Participants will get education on proper walking and running form to help them prevent injury during their twice weekly workouts. In addition, participants will receive weekly informational emails and motivational posts on the program’s RoCo Fit Facebook page, RoCoFitOK. Fun incentives will be given to those finishing the program.

RoCo Fit has offered this free program to the community since 2012 with over 2,300 unduplicated participants having registered and reaped the benefits. Many past participants have shared their experiences through written testimonial. Here is one:

I would like to share a little about my experience with ROCO. After the Boston Marathon bombing, I did a fundraiser run to help raise money for the bombing victims, and I was hooked. A friend asked me if I would be interested in joining a group that was training for a half marathon. I can tell you in that during that training, I made friends that will last a lifetime, managed to do many firsts for me. First 5k, 10k, 15k, and half marathon. All had emotional endings. My wife asked me why I was so emotional, and my answer was “I never imagined I would be able to do something like this.” After that first season, it was an honor to serve the ROCO organization as a mentor. What a rewarding experience that was.

Fast forward to March 22, 2018. I was at the gym running on the “dreadmill”, didn’t really feel well, so I stopped and started home in the car. The further I drove, the worse the symptoms became. By the time I got home I knew. It was a heart attack.

The ambulance came, stabilized me, took me to ER where they placed 2 stents. The heart attack continued through the night. Next morning I got two more stents. After five nights in ICU and one in a regular room, I was discharged. I had people say “You are a runner and had a heart attack anyway so the running didn’t help.” What I had was a blood clot, and my cardiologist will confirm that the running and strength of my heart is what most likely saved my life. Had I been a sedentary person, I may not have survived. I am writing this today to express my gratitude to the ROCO, the ROCO leadership, mentors and participants for saving my life.

It doesn’t matter if you run or walk. Get up off the couch, participate, mentor, and be involved. It just might save someone’s life, or maybe your own. Thank you, ROCO!

There are many, many more testimonials shared each session. RoCo Fit is a fun, healthy activity program with caring, supportive volunteer mentors willing to encourage and help participants achieve their goals. It is a program that is positively changing our environment.

The first walk OR walk/run workout is on Tuesday, March 10th, 5:45 p.m. at Claremore Lake Park, newest shelter past bathrooms and across lake from boat and fishing dock-look for sign by shelter. Workouts for all fitness levels continue every Tuesday and Thursday at 6:00 p.m. in Claremore Lake Park. RoCo Fit is open and free of charge to anyone 13 years old or older that live, work, play, and/or learn in Rogers County. To learn more about this health focused fun group and/or to register visit us online at www.rocofit.org. You may also register in person at the first few workouts. If you have questions please call or email Renetta Harrison, 918-341-3166, renettah@health.ok.gov.

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