By: Peggy Potter
Associate Director of Health & Wellness
As part of our core priorities, the Madison Area YMCA encourages healthy living and wellness at every stage of life. Whether you are a young teen involved in a multitude of physical activity or an adult seeking to begin your fitness journey, there is no better time to get more involved in improving your physical health than now.
The best activity to partake in this summer requires no equipment or extra cost: walking. Setting a walking goal every day, whether it be walking a mile a day or 10,000 steps a day, is an easy way to drastically improve your health. In fact, walking can decrease your risk of heart disease and stroke and also improve sleep patterns and poor moods. Kyle Giffen, Member Experience Manager at the Madison Area YMCA, reminds us, “Walking is an activity fit for everybody. Its simplicity makes it accessible to individuals of various ages, abilities, and backgrounds.”
Encouraging a friend or family member to join your walking adventures as a “walking buddy” can also help keep you accountable while having a companion to keep you company. Additionally, you can take advantage of the time during your walk and listen to your favorite podcast or music. Either way, walking does not have to be the monotonous activity it is made out to be; rather, it is an opportunity to improve your health and spend time with someone or something you enjoy while also soaking up the summer sun.
Fitness is a very personal journey that does not have a linear path to success. The Madison Area YMCA aims to help each individual reach their vision of success in their own unique ways. Kyle Giffen further states, “The Y is a place for everyone. You do not have to look a certain way or be at a certain fitness level to reach your goals. At the Y, you get to write your own journey, and we will support you at every turn.”
I cannot image a life outside of fitness. It has become a way of life for me. As a staff member, it brings be great joy and fulfillment to share this joy with YMCA members. Here at the Y, we offer more than just fitness classes; we offer a personal, tailored journey, perfectly molded to fit each of our members no matter their age or appearance.
It is extremely important to prioritize your physical health, no matter how busy life may be. There are a multitude of ways you can improve and protect your health; from walking or swimming with a friend to joining local fitness groups, you can create a fitness plan that is fit for you. Start off by investing in your fitness journey at the Y, and you will be sure to able see and feel your health improve by the end of the summer!