Roussel: Take the Run St. James Challenge, add years to your life in the process

Published 12:02 am Wednesday, September 19, 2018

“Exercise is medicine” is not simply a saying, but actually backed by scientific research.

According to, research proves that regular exercise (about 30 minutes, five times per week) — and running in particular — has health benefits that extend well beyond any prescription.

Studies indicate running can help prevent obesity, type 2 diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure, stroke and some cancers.

What’s more, scientists have shown running also vastly improves mental health and can even help you live longer… which is exactly what St. James Parish Hospital wants you to do.

St. James Parish Hospital is once again partnering to sponsor the Run St. James Challenge, which challenges our entire community to get moving.

Whether you can run or walk, accepting the challenge not only supports other community organizations but can also add years to your life.

The Challenge

For the last six years, the hospital has partnered with Chad Weidert and his wife Susan, founders of River Parish Running, to sponsor the Run St. James Challenge in an effort to encourage community kids to get up and get active.

This year, we are expanding the initiative to award anyone who meets the challenge.

St. James Parish Hospital is proud to help join people together through a focus on fitness. To learn more about the runners club or find out about local practice runs, “like” River Parish Runners on Facebook.

Anyone who completes three of four local races will be awarded a custom “St. James Run Challenge” medal, which has only been earned by an elite few in our parish.

We want to reward your commitment to better health, so there are no time requirements. If you get moving (at any pace,) you are winning at wellness.

The series options include the 4-H Glow Run (Sept. 27), the St. Michael Fall Festival Run (Oct. 7), the Pumpkin Patch Bridge Run (Oct. 28) and the Bonfire Festival Run (Dec. 16).

The hospital is proud to sponsor several of these races and invites you to visit our booth during the events for health-related goodies and information.

Anyone who completes three of four local races will be awarded a custom “St. James Run Challenge” medal.

Awarding Dedication

Community members who meet the challenge — completing at least three of four races — will be invited to a special medal presentation at the hospital after the final race in December.

Focus on Wellness

Health care to St. James Parish Hospital extends far beyond healing the sick.

While we are here to offer compassionate care to cure, we want to also help you live a longer, healthier, happier life by supporting initiatives that promote wellness.

We do this through the support of community programs such as the run challenge and by hosting events such as our $5 PSA Screenings starting on Sept. 24 and our upcoming Flu Shot Fair and Breast Cancer Awareness Events in October.

Check the local papers, “like” the hospital on Facebook and visit our online calendar at to learn more about the many ways we are focusing on wellness this fall.

Kassie S. Roussel is the director of marketing for St. James Parish Hospital. She can be reached at or 225-258-5998.