This March, Cancer Research UK will launch its “Walk All Over Cancer” awareness event. The event encourages us to walk 10,000 steps daily in March and raise money for life-saving research into cancer.
Why is walking excellent exercise?
Walking is often overlooked as a form of exercise, but it’s one of the easiest ways to get more active and become healthier – and you don’t need expensive equipment or a gym membership to do it.
The average person walks around 3,000 to 5,000 steps per day, but it’s easier than you might think to increase that with a few simple lifestyle changes. For example, you could:
- take the stairs rather than lifts or escalators
- walk the kids to school rather than take the car
- get off the bus a stop earlier
- meet a friend for a catchup and a walk
You also don’t need any fancy tech to count your steps. Most smartphones can track how many steps you take and how far you walk. You just need to remember to carry your phone with you.
By increasing your step count to 10,000, you’ll be walking around five miles or 8km a day (based on the average stride). Walking that distance is a great way to burn calories and get fit. You’ll also find that the exercise-induced endorphins will leave you feeling better too.
Improving cancer survival rates
Ongoing research has improved cancer screening, diagnosis and treatment. This research means that over the last 40 years, cancer survival rates have doubled, with 50% of patients surviving for 10 or more years in England and Wales. To help these stats get even better, we need to make sure we act quickly is something doesn’t seem right.
Don’t put it off!
Spotting early signs of many cancers can increase your survival rate. For example, more than nine in 10 bowel cancer patients survive the disease for five years or more if diagnosed at the earliest stage.
Diagnosing cancer before it can spread means that your treatment is more likely to be successful. However, many cancers develop inside your body, making them difficult to spot in the early stages. Also, not every person with cancer has symptoms.
General cancer symptoms include unexplained pain or ache, very heavy night sweats, unexplained weight loss, fatigue and any unusual lump or swelling anywhere. If you’ve got any concerns about your health, it’s essential that you get advice as soon as possible.
Support available for JIB scheme members
If any of your employees who are covered by the ECIS Private Medical Insurance (PMI) scheme have any concerns around cancer, they can call Bupa’s Direct Access Service, who will triage the member and provide onward referral if necessary. The service is quick and easy and can be used from the comfort of your own home.
There’s also the Babylon Digital GP service which provides access to a GP 24 hours a day, seven days a week.
The time it takes to make a phone call could be life-saving, so Don’t Put It Off. It’s better to have the peace of mind that nothing is wrong rather than waiting until it’s too late for treatment to be successful.
The ECIS Bupa scheme can also be provided for your office staff so if you are thinking of a PMI policy for your employees or would like ECIS to review your current arrangement, speak to the ECIS team on 0330 221 0241, visit https://www.ecins.co.uk/ or email firstname.lastname@example.org.
Getting involved with Walking all Over Cancer
Signing up to take part in Walk All Over Cancer is easy. To commit to 10,000 steps every day in March, head to the Cancer Research UK website and signup at https://www.cancerresearchuk.org/get-involved/find-an-event/walk-all-over-cancer. You will be sent a digital fundraising pack and be set up with a Giving Page to help you raise money online. You’ll also get a free Cancer Research UK t-shirt.
The best way to have fun and raise money during your challenge is to join forces and fundraise as a group. Why not get your work colleagues involved too?