Active Living by Design—The Most Fun You Can Have Being Sustainable

January 17, 2009 at 12:23 am Leave a comment

A short list of some of the challenges facing the islands of Hawaii can seem daunting and disjoint: Rising fuel and food prices, continuing sprawl and the traffic that it brings, growing environmental impacts, and skyrocketing rates of chronic disease and obesity. A closer look shows that healthy community designs can positively affect all of these challenges and more. National planning and public health expert Mark Fenton has been working with the Dept. of Health’s Healthy Hawaii Initiative to help put the four keys to healthy community design in place on Maui. He has an inspiring and entertaining perspective on how to get people moving again, and will lead an engaging discussion on common pitfalls (“Where’s the money?” “Not in my backyard.”) and some successful strategies to overcome those challenges here.

 Mark Fenton
Public Health & Transportation Consultant: Healthy Hawai’i
January 28
Khei Charter School
7 p.m.–9 p.m.

Mark Fenton is an entertaining, persuasive, and knowledgeable walking advocate–one of the nation’s foremost experts on the activity. He is the former host of PBS’s America’s Walking, and author of several publications, including Pedometer Walking and The Complete Guide to Walking for Health, Weight Loss and Fitness. The former editor-at-large of Walking Magazine, Mr. Fenton is well known in Hawai`i, where he has conducted numerous workshops and meetings sponsored by the Department of Health’s Healthy Hawai`i Initiative.

Mark is also a champion walker. From 1986 to 1990, Mark was a member of the United States national racewalking team five times, and represented the U.S. in numerous international competitions. In addition, while training for the 1984 and 1988 Olympic Trials in the 50-kilometer (31-mile) racewalk, he studied biomechanics and exercise physiology at the Olympic Training Center’s Sports Science Laboratory in Colorado Springs, Colorado.

Mark’s research in exercise science began with the study of the biomechanics of walking at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT). After earning BS and MS degrees from MIT, Mark worked as manager of research engineering at Reebok for three years. His work led to numerous publications related to exercise science, human performance, and athletic footwear and materials, while also providing plentiful experience on the health benefits of walking. Mark used that knowledge as a regular columnist in Walking Magazine and as a speaker and motivator on public health and fitness issues. His instruction spans the spectrum of walking, from introductory clinics on walking for health to coaching at the highest levels, including the U.S. men’s team at the World Championships in 1995, and America’s top-ranked female racewalker in 1998.

Most recently, Mark has become a vocal pedestrian advocate and recognized authority on public health issues and the need for community, environmental, and public-policy initiatives to encourage more walking and bicycling. He has addressed a wide range of groups, from regional and national transportation and planning conferences, to professional engineering and safety organizations, to advocacy groups and public health educational symposia. He’s also author of The 90-Day Fitness Walking Program, Precision Walking, and The New Walker’s Logbook, and he appears frequently on broadcast and cable television news, health, and lifestyle programming. Certain that he must practice what he preaches, Mark still walks regularly – usually with his wife Lisa, and children, Maxwell and Skye – for fun, health, and to stay in shape for hiking, cycling, orienteering, kayaking, and cross-country skiing whenever they have a chance.


Entry filed under: Events.

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