Show your heart some love!

Start by stopping by a UPMC Health Plan Connect Service and Sales Center February 11 to get a FREE heart-health checkup.

UPMC Health Plan health coaches will be on hand to talk one-on-one and provide helpful advice to:

  • Lower your heart disease risk.
  • Better manage the condition.
  • Decrease stress.
  • Eat healthier.
  • Get more active.

We’re also offering FREE glucose, blood pressure, and cholesterol screenings as well as other giveaways to help you stay on track!*

 When:

Saturday, February 11, anytime from noon to 5 p.m.

Where:

UPMC Health Plan Connect Service and Sales Center at:

  • Logan Valley Mall (first floor near Kay Jewelers)
  • Millcreek Mall (near H&M)
  • Monroeville Mall (second floor near JCPenney)
  • Ross Park Mall (first floor near Starbucks)
  • South Hills Village (first floor near Target)

*Free cholesterol and blood pressure screenings will be provided at all participating locations except South Hills Village while supplies last. Only blood pressure screenings will be offered at South Hills Village.

Pittsburgh events – February 2017

It may be cold in February, but that doesn’t mean you have to stay bundled up inside! Many events will get you up and moving throughout the Pittsburgh area that you won’t even notice the cold! Check out the events below to start moving towards a healthier you!

Every Tuesday and Thursday in February- Yoga in the Library

This is a traditional Hatha class taught with a vinyasa flow. We flow from one position to the next and focus on alignment, posture, breath, increased flexibility, strength, and balance. The class is held at the Dormont Library and is donation-based, with a recommended donation of $5. Beginners are welcome, and loaner yoga mats are available. 

Thursday, February 2 – Urban Fitness Hike in Sewickley

Exercise doesn’t have to be dull! This winter, come outside and play with Venture Outdoors as we hike Pittsburgh’s rugged terrain. You’ll warm up quickly by climbing steep hills and impossibly high stairways with incredible views of the city from unusual vantages — you’ll work up a sweat!

Thursday, February 2 – Modern Mindfulness: A Conversation with Author Rohan Gunatillake and Oncologist Dr. Lanie Francis in Pittsburgh

Explore the concept of mindfulness and how this spiritual practice grew into a global well-being trend. Join mindfulness author and expert Rohan Gunatillake and UPMC oncologist Dr. Lanie Francis at the Carnegie Museum of Art for discussions around the role of this practice in both mental and physical health.

Saturday, February 4  – The Allegheny 9 Race Series in North Park

Want to take on a new challenge this year? Try the Allegheny 9 Race Series! The Allegheny 9, an innovative race series designed by the Allegheny County Parks Foundation (ACPF) to shine a spotlight on our 9 Allegheny County Parks and to raise funds to support our ongoing improvement projects. Register for at least three races and receive a 20 percent discount! The first race of 2017 begins with a 10K race in North Park!

Saturday, February 4  – Giant Eagle Kidapalooza & KDKA Health Fair

Get out of the house and escape this winter to this exciting indoor carnival! Entertainment, education, rides, inflatables, crafts, sports, characters, games, exhibits and more – Giant Eagle Kidapalooza 2017 has something to offer for kids of ALL ages! This year’s event will be at the David L. Lawrence Convention Center.

Saturday, February 4  – 7th Annual Winterfest

A great cure for cabin fever! Come to the the South Shore at Moraine State Park for ice carving, horse-drawn wagon rides, a 5K run/walk, a chili cook-off, a visit with “Iceburgh” the Pittsburgh Penguins mascot, dog sleds, live music, snowshoe workshop, chainsaw carving, a North Country Trail hike, cross-country skiing, crafts, food, a bonfire, and an appearance by Smokey the Bear.

Saturday, February 4  – UPMC Health Plan Pittsburgh Half Marathon Kick-Off Run

Jump-start your training with the FREE annual Half Marathon kick-off training run for the UPMC Health Plan Pittsburgh Half Marathon hosted by P3R and the Steel City Road Runners. Join runners from around the city at UPMC Rooney Sports Complex for a three- to five-mile or seven- to 10-mile training run!

Sunday, February 5 – Sunday Hike in the Woods: Moraine State Park

Come for a hike in the woods with Venture Outdoors! Spend the day exploring different trails and natural areas on this advanced hike. We’ll cover eight to 10 miles while learning about the natural history of the area.

Monday, February 8  – Cooking with Potatoes

Who doesn’t love potatoes?! Join the Giant Eagle Market District in Robinson for some hands-on cooking with spuds. Our Chefs will share the true beauty of the potato, and together, you’ll create some dazzling, spud-centric dishes. Recipes include potato-wrapped halibut, the French classic Anna potatoes, patatas bravas (Spanish-style potatoes), and more.

Saturday, February 11 – Cupid’s Chase 5K

Looking for something extra special to do for Valentine’s Day? Challenge that special someone to a 5K race! Community Options Inc. invites runners, walkers, and rollers (baby strollers and wheelchairs) to help make a difference in the lives of people with disabilities by participating in the annual Cupid’s Chase 5K fundraiser. Taking place at PNC Park in downtown Pittsburgh, this event is sure to warm your heart!

Saturday, February 11 – Valentine’s Day 5K, 10K, 15K Races

Make Valentine’s Day more than just X’s and O’s; run or walk with your loved one! The 2017 Valentine’s Day event is on a certified course that begins at the North Park Boathouse. Each course has minimal elevation and is surrounded by the beauty of North Park and its lake.

Sunday, February 19 – Soup of the Month Walk

It might be cold outside, but you can warm up with a walk and some soup! Join Venture Outdoors for an invigorating three- to four-mile walk that explores one of the beautiful area parks. After the walk, enjoy a hot bowl of tasty soup! Two homemade soups will be served (one vegetarian) as well as bread, hot chocolate, and tea. Soups are provided by Soup Sega! of the Bulgarian Macedonian National Educational and Cultural Center.

Saturday, February 25 – Second Annual Iced Tees Winter Golf Classic

The Western Pennsylvania Chapter of the National Hemophilia Foundation invites you to participate in the Second Annual Iced Tees Winter Golf Classic! This unique event will take place at Diamond Run Golf Club in Sewickley, PA. The outing will include a 9-Hole Shotgun Scramble followed by a Chili Cook-Off and Awards Ceremony. We will be joined by a special guest from KISS 96.1! All proceeds from this event benefit the Western Pennsylvania Chapter of the National Hemophilia Foundation.

Saturday, February 25 – Spring Thaw

When you’re sick of the snow and just want winter to be over, sign up for the Spring Thaw! Traditionally, it’s used to kick off race season – a great “warm-up” run for the Pittsburgh Marathon in May. Choose between running 10, 15, or 20 miles through North Park! And get this: It has survived 39 brutal Pittsburgh winters already. You can too!

Sunday, February 26 – Meditation and Movement at the Museum

Relax. Move. Stretch. Dance. Meditate. Renew.

Recharge and refresh at the Carnegie Museum of Art! Spend a full morning focusing on your well-being through exercises in meditation and movement. Participate in as much as you would like to hit your inner reset button!

Monday, February 27 – What’s Cooking?

Join the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh for this cooking class! Learn to feed yourself and your friends! Chop, dice, and mince your way to culinary mastery — then eat what you cook.

EVENT: New year, new you!

If you’re finally ready for the new you, UPMC Health Plan health coaches will explain first steps on January 14 at the UPMC Health Plan Connect Service and Sales Center.

Here’s what you’ll get when you drop by:

  • Weight loss advice
  • Activity and food tips
  • A food journal to track calories
  • And more…

When:

Saturday, January 14, noon to 5 p.m.

Where:

UPMC Health Plan Connect Service and Sales Center at:

  • Logan Valley Mall (first floor near Kay Jewelers)
  • Millcreek Mall (near H&M)
  • Monroeville Mall (second floor near JCPenney)
  • Ross Park Mall (first floor near Starbucks)
  • South Hills Village (first floor near Target)

Pittsburgh events – January 2017

Start the New Year off with a bang and participate in one of the many events throughout Pittsburgh this January. From training runs, 5K races, and indoor activities, there are plenty of events to keep you moving during these winter months!

Wednesday, January 4 — Pay What You Can Yoga

Yoga on Centre in East Liberty is offering a pay-what-you-can yoga class on Wednesday evenings from 6 to 7:30 p.m. The class is donation-based in an effort to make yoga accessible and affordable to everyone. This supported Asana class will use yoga props to support the body for better alignment, opening of the joints, and teaching the respective aspect of the posture while developing strength and stability. This class bridges the gap between relaxation and fully active classic Asana work.

Saturday, January 7 — DICK’S Sporting Goods Pittsburgh Marathon Kick-off Training Run

Jump-start your training with the annual DICK’S Sporting Goods Pittsburgh Marathon Kick-off Training Run hosted by P3R and Steel City Road Runners from 7 to 11 a.m. on Pittsburgh’s North Side. This event will include training runs at various distances plus numerous activities! Take part and enjoy a morning of fitness, friends, fun, food, and free stuff!

Sunday, January 8 — Game Day Hike

Get in a good workout before the football game! Venture Outdoors will guide you through a hike at Hartwood Acres covering four to six miles of moderate terrain. This hike is focused on showcasing the area while enjoying the companionship of others.

Sunday, January 8 — Frigid 5 Miler

The Twelfth Annual Frigid 5 Miler will run through scenic North Park, beginning at the Lodge and passing by the Boathouse, a (possibly) frozen lake, the Ice Rink, and finishing back at the Lodge. This fairly challenging and hilly course may be cold in January, but that makes it even more fun and exciting! To top it off, there will be a stack of hot pancakes waiting for runners at the finish line.

Saturday, January 14 — AUTISM Frostbite 5K and Kids Fun Run

Bundle up and take on the challenge of a 5K in January! The AUTISM Frostbite 5K is an annual event bringing the community together to support Autism Awareness, in partnership with Team Cassie Foundation. Held at the North Park Boathouse, this race attracts runners and walkers to support a great cause.

Saturday, January 14 — Stargazing Hike

Join Venture Outdoors for a night hike at Deer Lakes Park! Enjoy the tranquility of the evening while observing the stars in the sky and the wildlife that is more active at night. The hike will cover three to four miles at a moderate pace going up and down some hills. Marvel at how well your eyes can adapt to the night!

Thursday, January 19 — Urban Fitness Hike Mt. Washington

Exercise doesn’t have to be dull! This winter, come outside and hike Pittsburgh’s rugged terrain. Hikers warm up quickly, climbing steep hills and impossibly high stairways with incredible views of the city from unusual vantages. This series of nine challenging five- to six-mile weeknight hikes will move at a fast pace. There will be occasional stops to discuss local landmarks.

Saturday, January 21— Amazing Butterfly Opening

Amazing Butterflies is a new exhibition at the Carnegie Museum of Natural History in Oakland. Adults and children will be transformed to the size of a butterfly to take flight on a fun adventure. Visitors will discover a surprise around each corner as they navigate an engaging maze-like exhibition where blades of grass tower above. Kids and parents alike can climb in pupa pods, crawl like a caterpillar through a monarch tunnel, soar down the butterfly zip line, and fend off a hairy plant attack that is a tactile delight. Amazing Butterflies combines the fun of a playground, the excitement of interactive learning, and polished programming to create a unique, family-friendly experience that opens just in time to brighten 2017’s coldest months.

Sunday, January 22 — Pittsburgh Yoga Expo

All are welcome to join in a day of inspiration and rejuvenation at the Sixth Annual Pittsburgh Yoga Expo. From participating in yoga workshops to watching yoga demonstrations and learning more about the healing arts, this day will be dedicated to bringing the local yoga and healing arts community together to share with the Pittsburgh community.

Saturday, January 28 — North Shore Tour 5K

There is plenty to see along the North Shore 5k route. From bridges to stadiums to fantastic views of downtown and more, participants have plenty of photo opportunities on this flat, fun route. The run will be at a casual pace, to accommodate all abilities on this guided tour. The tour will last approximately one hour, as it will make multiple stops to take in the scenery and learn about the surroundings.

EVENT: Happy, Healthy Holidays!

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Join us to find out how to stay cold- and flu-free this season. December is peak time for cold and flu germs. Don’t let these uninvited guests take over your holidays.

Talk one-on-one with a UPMC Health Plan health coach:

  • Learn the secret for not getting sick this winter.
  • Hear the reasons why you should get a flu shot.
  • Discover the connection between holiday stress and colds and flu.
  • Get tools and tip sheets to help you stay healthy over the holidays.

Also, get a free flu shot while supplies last.

When: Saturday, December 10, anytime from noon to 5 p.m.

Where: UPMC Health Plan Connect Service and Sales Center at:

  • Logan Valley Mall (first floor near Kay Jewelers)
  • Millcreek Mall (near H&M)
  • Monroeville Mall (second floor in front of JCPenney)
  • Ross Park Mall (first floor next to Starbucks)
  • South Hills Village (first floor in front of J.Crew)

* Free flu shots will be provided at all participating locations except South Hills Village.

Show your heart some love!

Start by visiting a UPMC Health Plan Connect Service and Sales Center on February 11 to get a FREE heart-health checkup. 

UPMC Health Plan health coaches will be on hand to talk one-on-one and provide helpful heart-health advice to:

  • Lower your heart disease risk.
  • Better manage the condition.
  • Decrease stress.
  • Eat healthier.
  • Get more active.
  • And more!

Free screenings and giveaways!*

 When:

Saturday, February 11 (stop by any time from noon to 5 p.m.)

Where:

UPMC Health Plan Connect Service and Sales Center at:

  • Logan Valley Mall (first floor near Kay Jewelers)
  • Millcreek Mall (near H&M)
  • Monroeville Mall (second floor near JCPenney)
  • Ross Park Mall (first floor near Starbucks)
  • South Hills Village (first floor near Target)

 

* Free cholesterol and blood pressure screenings will be provided at all participating locations except South Hills Village while supplies last. Only blood pressure screenings will be offered at South Hills Village.

Heart health Q&A

Q: What dietary changes can I make to reduce my risk of heart disease?

A: Include healthy foods such as fruits and vegetables, whole grains, nuts and seeds. Swap pork and beef for healthier meats like chicken and fish, which contain less saturated fat and cholesterol. Avoid trans fats as much as possible.

Q: Does exercise help improve heart health?

A: Yes! The American Heart Association recommends at least 30 minutes of activity on five days each week (150 minutes per week) for overall cardiovascular health.

Q: What is cholesterol?

A: Cholesterol is a waxy, fat-like substance with multiple functions in the body. Our bodies naturally produce cholesterol, so technically we don’t need to eat cholesterol, but we also absorb cholesterol from animal products we eat. If cholesterol levels are too high, it can clog the arteries and cause many problems.

* http://www.heart.org/HEARTORG/

Lifestyle changes for a healthy heart

Cardiovascular disease is the leading cause of death in the U.S., but having it in your family history does not mean you are doomed to also contract heart disease. Take control of what you can now by following some of these basic lifestyle-changing steps to make a positive impact on your future:

1. Get up and moving

It is recommended to get a minimum of 150 minutes of activity every week. This can include bike riding, jogging or running, or using any of the cardio equipment in the gym such as elliptical, stair climber, and swimming. Children and adolescents should get one hour of physical activity every day.

2. Eat your veggies

Choosing a heathy diet rich in fruits and vegetables and low in sodium, saturated fats, and trans fats can help you avoid heart disease for long-term health. This diet can also help you lower your blood pressure and cholesterol.

3. Put out the cigarettes

Smoking can harm your heart and vessels by damaging the elasticity in addition to raising your blood pressure, and overall can increase your risk of arthrosclerosis and heart attack. Increase the length and quality of your life by making the choice to quit smoking.

 

Resource:

http://www.cdc.gov/Features/HeartMonth/index.html

Special enrollment event

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We have the lowest priced plans.*

Join us for a special enrollment event. You can talk one-on-one with a UPMC Health Plan service and sales associate who can help you:

  • Find the plan that’s best for you.
  • Determine if you may qualify for a federal subsidy.
  • Sign up for a plan right away.

Sign up by December 15 for coverage starting January 1.

When:

Wednesday, December 7, 10 a.m. – 3 p.m., Millcreek Mall

Thursday, December 8, 10 a.m. – 3:00 p.m., Monroeville Mall

Tuesday, December 13, 10 a.m. – 3 p.m., Logan Valley Mall

Where:

UPMC Health Plan Connect Service and Sales Center at:

  • Logan Valley Mall (first floor near Kay Jewelers)
  • Millcreek Mall (near H&M)
  • Monroeville Mall (second floor in front of JCPenney)

*Based on plans available in Allegheny County, Blair County, and Erie County for 2017.

The UPMC Health Plan Marketplace is a shopping site only for UPMC Health Plan products and is not the federal Health Insurance Marketplace. To access, please log in to www.upmchealthplan.com/coverage.

To access the federal Health Insurance Marketplace, please visit www.healthcare.gov.

December health and wellness events

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The holiday season has officially started — and there are plenty of healthy holiday-themed events to get the entire family active. We have the inside scoop on this month’s holiday health-and-wellness related events for all ages!

Saturday December 3, 2016

Reindeer Race: Are you looking for a family-friendly event? Then this one is just for you. Celebrate the holiday season with a 5K run or walk, one-mile walk or run, and kids’ walk or run in Harmony, Pa.

Sunday December 4, 2016

Girls on the Run 5K: Girls on the Run is a life-changing, non-profit program for girls in the third through eighth grades. The mission is to inspire girls to be joyful, healthy, and confident using a fun, experience-based curriculum that creatively integrates running. This 5K benefits this season’s runners and future participants.

Sunday December 3, 2016

Jingle Bell Walk/ Run for Arthritis: Jingle Bell Run/Walk for Arthritis is a fun and festive way to kick off your holidays by helping others! Wear a holiday-themed costume. Tie jingle bells to your shoelaces. Raise funds to help find a cure for arthritis, the nation’s leading cause of disability. Run or walk a 5K route with your team members and celebrate the season by giving.

Sunday December 4, 2016

Candy Cane Walk: Join Venture Outdoors for a family-friendly walk in the park. We’ll search for candy canes hidden along the trail and afterward enjoy some delicious hot chocolate! You’ll use the candy canes we find to stir the hot chocolate and add a little extra flavor to this tasty treat.

Monday December 5, 2016

Sparkle Season Light Hike: On this seven-plus mile hike; you will visit the main light exhibits of downtown Pittsburgh; and then hike up Sycamore Street to the top of Mount Washington for a panoramic view of the city. This fast-paced hike covers a relatively large area in a short period of time. It’s the perfect way to experience the holiday season!

Thursday December 15, 2016

Fleet Feet Holiday Lights Fun Run: Put on your best holiday socks and wrap yourself in lights for the most wonderful run of the year. The tradition keeps getting bigger, and this year’s extravaganza will be no exception. Run or walk the best indoor and outdoor holiday displays in the city with hundreds of others. Again, everyone is asked to make a donation and/or purchase raffle tickets to benefit the UPMC Children’s Hospital Free Care Fund. Raffle tickets will be on sale before the run.

Saturday December 17, 2016

Twinkle Lights and Hot Cocoa Walk: Celebrate the season by strolling among the sparkling lights and decorations covering downtown Pittsburgh. You’ll walk along sidewalks to see the main exhibits before stopping at a local coffee shop to warm up with some hot cocoa!

Wednesday December 21, 2016

Winter Solstice Stroll: Join Venture Outdoors for an evening of exploration on a moderate four-mile hike around Hartwood Acres. On the shortest day of the year, we will enjoy the tranquility of the evening while listening for the critters that prefer the dark and stopping occasionally to gaze at the stars.

Sunday December 28, 2016

Holiday Soup Hike: It’s the time of year to celebrate your family, friends, and — don’t forget — you! Join us on a chilly day for a three- to four-mile hike that explores Frick Park. After the hike, we will gather under a pavilion and warm ourselves with a hot bowl of gourmet soup. There will be a choice of two soups (one vegetarian), bread, and hot beverages. Sponsored by Soup Sega!

December 31, 2016

Harmony Silvester 5K & 1 Mile: Harmony celebrates New Year’s Eve with a family-oriented “Silvester” celebration reflecting the community’s historic German roots, beginning with a 5K race and a 1-Mile Fun Run at with hundreds of runners and concluding with a countdown in German to a ball-drop and fireworks welcoming 2017 at 6 p.m. — midnight in Germany. Other activities include a Christmas tree-throwing contest; Bleigiessen, the German tradition of examining the shape of a bit of melted lead dropped into water to interpret what the New Year may hold; a pork and sauerkraut dinner at the Harmony Museum and other outdoor food options; music; and year-end surprises at specialty shops throughout town. Parking is available at various locations.

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