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DENVER — Crowds of people hit the pavement Wednesday for National Walking Day.

A group of walkers got in their exercise early at Harvard Gulch Park in Denver. The American Heart Association and Centura Health partnered for the initiative.

Lori Pace was one of the walkers. She has high blood pressure, and heart disease runs in her family. She knows the importance of physical activity, and thinks that walking is a good option. “You can do it any time, and any place, and you can do it without any equipment,” Pace said.

Heart Disease is the leading cause of death in this country. To reduce your risk, the American Heart Association recommends 150 minutes of moderate activity, or 75 minutes of vigorous activity each week. “It cuts one’s risk of heart disease in half, 50 Percent!” said Dr. Mark Sheehan with South Denver Cardiology.

Doctors say these small steps can make a big difference in your health. Research shows for every hour of physical activity, you can add two hours to your life expectancy.