This Walk With A Doc program is a walking-based, small-group, outdoor fitness program for persons attending the Slimming World Cardiff South (Future Inns) class – and the first WWAD program in the UK. The program is not a weight loss program, but a program to promote the general health, wellbeing and fitness of those undertaking a weight loss program, many of whom are approaching their target weight. The group meets each Tuesday and Wednesday evening at 18.00, and each Saturday lunchtime at 12.00 after the mid-morning Slimming World class.
The 60-90 minute sessions, which take place at several locations in the Cardiff Bay area, include a walking warm-up/pulse raiser, flexibility stretches, main walking CV with speed and elevation intervals, resistance exercise using body weight and resistance bands, walking cool down, and maintenance and developmental stretches. The sessions have plenty of time built in for instruction, monitoring and discussion of health and exercise topics.
Prior to joining the program, prospective participants undergo health screening using the Physical Activity Readiness Questionnaire (PAR-Q), and those answering YES to any of the questions on the PAR-Q, require clearance from their physician before starting the program. As well as health screening, prospective participants are given written information about the program aims, risk and benefits, and their part in risk reduction, then asked to provide their informed consent to participation.
The program has been running for approximately 18 months, with all participants making progress in strength, balance, flexibility, endurance and confidence, and with seven members successfully completing the Kidney Wales Cardiff 10K last September. Prior to that, none of those entering in the 10K had ever participated in a competitive sports event. Two members then went on to do the much more arduous Pendine Sands 10K this April. And as well as improved levels of fitness, participants report that they sleep better, have a reduced tendency to eat when under stress, and that they get lots of complimentary comments about their appearance.