What an interesting year 2011 has been here in the Treasure Valley. If you’re reading this column, there’s a pretty good chance you’re interested in learning about health and fitness. And this year gave us plenty to think about on those subjects. Here’s a look back at some of the most newsworthy health stories of the past year.
January began with the announcement that one of Idaho’s favorite sons, baseball Hall of Famer Harmon Killebrew, was suffering from esophageal cancer, to which he succumbed in May. The death of fitness icon Jack LaLanne shook us at the end of January. Even at 96 years young, he remained an inspiration to many of us in the health and fitness industry.
In February, the city of Meridian took a bold stance against smoking, banning it in public parks, and raising the debate about individual rights versus those of the community at large. Another story making news in February was the reported connection between a daily dose of diet soda and a higher risk for stroke.
In March, Elizabeth Taylor died of congestive heart failure. Though she had more than her fair share of ailments and health issues, she was dedicated to helping those suffering from AIDS. Also in March, the FDA announced it would look into a possible connection between food dyes and ADHD.
During April’s Autism Awareness Week, we shared some of the Treasure Valley’s local resources for families affected by this disorder. As the valley’s farmers markets began opening and the weather became friendly again, local residents turned out for the annual Race to Robie Creek and the Beat Coach Pete Scholarship Run/Walk.
May brought another popular local event, Boise Bike Week, and June brought the Bodybuilding.com Fitness Expo, Boise Rec Fest, and the A Mile For Men’s Health events. Also in June, First Lady Michelle Obama introduced My Plate as a new nutritional guideline, replacing the old food pyramid. In July, the Boise River (finally) opened for floating, making thousands of recreation seekers across the Treasure Valley very happy.
As the year came to a close, two local events drew a lot of attention, for different reasons. In September, thousands of women from throughout the Treasure Valley turned out for the largest women’s fitness event in the country, St. Luke’s Women’s Fitness Celebration. And in November, the city of Boise followed Meridian’s lead, passing a controversial smoking ban for bars and private clubs. The new law will take effect on January 2, 2012, just three days from now.
That smoking ban is sure to be one of the most talked-about health stories of 2012, and as the days and months pass, there are sure to be many more intriguing stories regarding health and fitness in the Treasure Valley. Stay tuned.
Talk it up:
What do you think was the most important Treasure Valley health and fitness story of 2011?
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