GOING WALKIES: Toowoomba Central Walkers group leader Barry Herrman is ready for the One Million Steps campaign run by the Heart Foundation.
GOING WALKIES: Toowoomba Central Walkers group leader Barry Herrman is ready for the One Million Steps campaign run by the Heart Foundation. Kevin Farmer

Why walking a million steps could save your life

TWO bouts with deep vein thrombosis and a pulmonary embolism were enough to get Barry Herrman walking.

It was 14-years ago that, after a number of health issues, Mr Herrman decided things had to change.

On the back of the Heart Foundation's launch of the One Million Steps campaign, the organisation's long-time volunteer is encouraging others in the region to get walking.

Reflecting on his own journey to better health, Mr Herrman said walking was an exercise we often overlook.

"I was very unfit and had a lot of trouble just walking around the block," he said.

"It used to take me an hour and now it only takes 15 minutes.

"I can now walk all the way down South St to Tabletop Mountain.

"My health has certainly improved."

Barry Herrman said he is now healthier after a stint in hospital got him into walking.
Barry Herrman said he is now healthier after a stint in hospital got him into walking. Kevin Farmer

Mr Herrman shared his story in the hope that others in the region will sign up and join him in the challenge.

Recalling the day he had a pulmonary embolism, Mr Herrman urged residents to look out for the warning signs regardless of how old you are.

"I was bending down one morning and that's when it hit," he said.

"I asked my wife to help me but she didn't believe me until I got up and went blue in the face."

Despite being a volunteer at the organisation for 14 years, this year will be the first time Mr Herrman attempts the One Million Steps challenge.

While he hasn't set a time for when he would like to complete the challenge, Mr Herrman said just walking more would be a bonus for him.

"Walking doesn't cost anything," he said.

"It only costs a bit of time out of your day."

The campaign, launched by Prime Minister Malcolm Turnbull at the weekend, gives participants 20 weeks to walk a million steps to encourage millions of Australians to live a health lifestyle.



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