The E-News site has been inactive since February 2011 and may contain outdated information and/or broken links. For current and up-to-date Tufts news and information, please visit Tufts Now at
Tufts University e-news

Search  GO >

this site people
Tufts University Logo Bottom Search Bottom  
left side photo

Walking Off The Weight

Walking Off The WeightThrougha unique Tufts program, Somerville city workers are counting theirsteps en route to healthier lifestyles.Somerville,Mass.

Medford/Somerville, Mass. [10.03.04] Determined to get in shape, NicholasSalerno is pursuing a healthier lifestyle one step at a time.And by his calculations, he takes nearly 9,000 steps towards thatgoal every day. Armed with a pedometer supplied by Tufts, Salernois just one of many Somerville city workers walking his weightoff through a unique health initiative organized by the FriedmanSchool of Nutrition Science and Policy.

“We’retrying to increase physical activity and health awareness,”Jessica Collins – a Friedman School project manager whohelps run the “ShapeUp Somerville” program – told The Boston Globe.

What beganas an initiative aimed at preventing obesity among elementaryschool students through in-school programs, revised cafeteriamenus, and after-school programs has broadened into a city-widecollaborative health program.

“Salernois one of many city employees who signed up with Shape Up Somervilleto track his daily mileage and monitory his overall health, eatingand fitness routines,” reported the Globe. “Participantstranslate their daily walking mileage into virtual routes theycould be covering if they actually hit the road. The program,run by Tufts, allows them to track mileage online, get nutritiontips and overall fitness encouragement.”

It appearsto be working.

“I’mmore likely to walk now than get in the car,” Salerno –director of the city’s elections department – toldthe Globe, adding that the distance he’s walkedsince joining the program is roughly equivalent to walking fromBoston to Montreal.

Mike Foley– supervisor of school facilities – estimated thathe walks five to seven miles a day.

“Ifeel better when people say ‘Hey, you look great,’”Foley told the Globe, noting that he has already lost27 pounds since joining Shape Up Somerville.

Even Somerville’sMayor – Joseph Curtatone – has signed on.

“Alreadyin good shape with conscientious eating habits, the mayor sayshe was open to learning more and becoming a smarter eater,”reported the Globe. After cutting back his physical activityafter suffering a calf injury in May, he also wanted to returnto his pre-injury weight.

“It’sdefinitely helped me,” Curtatone told the Globe.“It’s a great self-check.”


Related Stories
Featured Profile