I couldn’t help but think of Bugs Bunny’s “What’s up doc?” when I held a recent community walking event. Just call me the “Meetup doc.”

Earlier this spring I held Austin’s first Walk-with-a-Doc event. It was simple and fun. We had a diverse and wonderful group and I learned and reinforced a few things myself.

I opened the event by reviewing a few things about healthy eating and processed foods, discussed the importance of exercise and the mind-body connection. Some people had their blood pressures checked before and after the walk. And the weather was perfect with a nice morning chill for wearing our sky blue Walk-with-a-Doc t-shirts.

Being in nature revitalizes me. There is nothing more healing than being outside, hearing the birds and seeing the beauty of nature.

It’s bigger than we are. I had scouted out a particular route for the walk, but fortunately we had a few participants who knew Shoal Creek better than I did. So we changed the plan a little and were able to explore parts of the path many of us had never seen before. What a wonderful reward for letting go…

It felt so good to move. We walked over two miles. While that’s far from the achievement of the Austin Marathon participants the week before, it was still great for our bodies.

The event was like integrative family medicine – a blending of all of the parts that matter. A late comer joined our group and asked if I was walking with my family. My teenage son did join us as did my extended “family” of patients, old friends and new friends.

This simple event really is about connections and community- which is very good for everyone’s health. After all, isn’t that what medicine should be all about?