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Walking club gains strides for health around Smyrna Park
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A walking club that starts out of nowhere has attracted these Ceres residents and others on morning walks around Smyrna Park on Mondays and Wednesdays. The group meets at the picnic shelter at 6 a.m. now. - photo by Contributed to the Courier

A new walking club that has formed in Ceres has grown in size and popularity since it was announced in the Courier two weeks ago.

Two Ceres women started up the walking club that welcomes anyone interested in walking around Smyrna Park for their health sake and adding to their social life.

Melissa Reece and Debbie Bailey, a registered nurse, are putting out the word for others to join them on walks around the park from 6 a.m. to 8 a.m. on Mondays and Wednesdays, rain or shine. The group will meet at the Smyrna Park picnic shelter on Fowler Road starting at 6 a.m.

The club had 13 regular walkers but those numbers swelled to 32 after the Courier article on Sept. 18. Reece said that the club struck into a desire of many who wanted to walk but were too nervous or afraid to do it alone. The club gives others more security as well as social interaction while walking.

"We've heard people say they would walk more if they had walking partners," said Reece. "It's just a way to walk in a safer way."

Reece said she started walking regularly for better health and weight management. She recalls being out of breath when she started brisk walks and "thought that was ridiculous." She steadily increased distance and regularity of walking and is now up to five-mile walks.

"It feels better in my heart and soul and after I'm kind of proud of myself," said Reece, who encourages parents to walk with their children.

Reece and Bailey are both Herballife distributors and are considering the club offering walkers a monthly drawing as an incentive to anyone toward walking more.

Reece stressed that anyone may join in the morning walks.
Anyone wanting more information on walking with the club other than just showing up may call Reese at 581-9617.